Encyclopedia Astronautica
2008.04.11 - ISS On-Orbit Status 04/11/08


Day 2 of joint E16/E17 operations.

The crew's work/sleep cycle shifted again, from yesterday's wakeup at 5:00am to 6:20am EDT (sleeptime tonight at 5:50pm, from 9:30pm). Work period will shift again tomorrow (to 2:20am -5:50pm).

Aboard ISS, the E16/E17 crew rotation/handover period went underway with full activity schedules for all six residents involved.

CDR-17 Sergei Volkov and FE-1-16 Yuri Malenchenko conducted a communications test between the two docked Soyuz vehicles (15S/16S), checking out comm systems both via hard-line mode (MBS) and S-band, and VHF mode on two channels, including the ground (TsUP-Moscow). (The test was also intended to provide multi-segment comm procedure training. Systems were reconfigured to nominal mode afterwards.)

In the Soyuz TMA-12/16S Orbital Module, Volkov installed the LKT local temperature sensor switch (TA251M1B) of the BITS2-12 onboard telemetry system and its ROM/read-only memory unit (PZU TA765B), both kept in storage from an earlier Soyuz.

Additionally, Volkov performed the routine task of taking two photos of the internal part of the DC1 port's docking cone, used for yesterday's 16S linkup. These images are used to refine current understanding of docking conditions. The pictures were then transferred to OCA for subsequent downlinking. (The objective is to take photo imagery of the scratch or scuff mark left by the head of the active docking probe on the internal surface of the passive drogue (docking cone) ring, now rotated out of the passageway. As other crewmembers before him, the CDR-17 used the Nikon D1X digital still camera to take two pictures each with the hatch closed down.)

Later today, as part of crew handovers, FE-1-17 Oleg Kononenko is scheduled for the monthly maintenance on the deactivated Russian IK0501 GA (Gas Analyzer) of the SOGS (Pressure Control & Atmospheric Monitoring System) by replacing its CO2 filter assembly (BF) with a new unit from FGB stowage (done last: 2/29), then reactivating the unit. With Peggy Whitson, the new crewmembers were also to conduct the periodic IK0501 sensor adjustment for O2 readings. (IK0501 is an automated system for measuring CO2, O2, and H2O in the air as well as the flow rate of the gas being analyzed).

After his second session with the ELITE-S2 (Elaboratore Immagini Televisive - Space 2) experiment yesterday, FE-2 Garrett Reisman powered up the payload's IMU (Interface Management Unit) to allow the ground to downlink the data from the session by remote command. Afterwards, Garrett turned the unit off. (The Italian (ASI) experiment ELITE-S2 is a human motion analysis facility for technological characterization and potential application for multifactorial movement analysis, to study the connection between brain, visualization and motion in micro-G.)

Major science activities in the Russian segment (RS) by Kononenko today focused on the biotechnological experiment CONJUGATION (Pairing), BIOEMULSION, and PLAZMIDA. (CONJUGATION: removal of the Recomb-K hybridization experiment from the KRIOGEM-03M thermostat/cooler, process activation at ambient temperature, photography of Recomb-K hardware, completing activation and returning to KRIOGEM at +4 degC. BIOEMULSION (BTKh-14): setting up incubator in Bioreactor, activation of mixing mode for culturing. PLAZMIDA (BIO-8): Removing Recomb-K hardware from KRIOGEM-03M, activating mobilization and setting up in KRIOGEM thermostat at +37degC. )

SFP So-Yeon Yi worked on her KAP (Korean Astronaut Program) science experiments. (Today's VC-14 schedule included activities on -

KAP01/Growth &mutation of plant seeds (monitoring, photography, filling out questionnaire),
KAP02/Identification of fruit fly genes responsive to gravity and responsible for aging (monitoring, video recording, later stowing),
KAP05/Study of SFP facial changes using a Moire screen (preparation, experiment ops session 1),
KAP06/Study of the possibility of using traditional Korean food in onboard food rations (testing during crew Dinner time at ~3:50pm EDT),
KAP07/Growth of Zeolite crystals, super crystals, and crystal layers in microgravity (equipment transfer, assembly, setup in SM),
KAP08/Synthesis of metal-organic porous materials in microgravity (hardware transfer, assembly and setup, installation of first sample, oven activation, and temperature check), and
KAP09/High-resolution telescope (ELT) and study of micro-electro-mechanical system (MEMS) for next generation telescopes (mounting equipment at SM window 9, activation, video recording, filling out questionnaire).)
The SFP also had a routine PMC (Private Medical Conference) via VHF, the regular daily tagup with her consultant team at TsUP-Moscow via VHF, and a telephone conversation at ~10:50am EDT (23:50 Korean Standard Time) with two listeners (one teen, one adult) from a Korean radio station, chosen from among listeners submitting 'Reasons why I want to talk to an astronaut'.

Working off a voluntary Russian task list, So-Yeon was to transfer imagery and other data from flash card to her RSK2 laptop HDD (Hard Disk Drive) for return to the ground.

As is standard procedure for newly arrived station residents, Sergei Volkov and Oleg Kononenko had their PMCs (Private Medical Conferences) via S-band.

FE-1 Malenchenko closed out the ESA/RSC-Energia experiment ALTCRISS (Alteino Long Term monitoring of Cosmic Rays on the ISS) with its AST Spectrometer and ALC equipment on FGB panel 420. (Yuri removed PCMCIA card #941 from the AST slot, checked it out on the RSK1 laptop for data quantity and total size of files, and stowed it with nine other memory cards for return to Earth on TMA-11.)

FE-2 Reisman filled out the regular FFQ (Food Frequency Questionnaire), his fourth, on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer). (On the FFQs, NASA/ESA astronauts keep a personalized log of their nutritional intake over time on special MEC software. Recorded are the amounts consumed during the past week of such food items as beverages, cereals, grains, eggs, breads, snacks, sweets, fruit, beans, soup, vegetables, dairy, fish, meat, chicken, sauces & spreads, and vitamins. The FFQ is performed once a week to estimate nutrient intake from the previous week and to give recommendations to ground specialists that help maintain optimal crew health. Weekly estimation has been verified to be reliable enough that nutrients do not need to be tracked daily.)

In the US Airlock (A/L), CDR Peggy Whitson terminated the regeneration of METOX (Metal Oxide) CO2 absorption canisters #0020 & #0021 in the A/L's oven, then started the bake-out process on canisters #0017 & #0019.

Whitson & Reisman conducted the weekly 10-min. CWC (Contingency Water Container) audit as part of on-going WDS (Water Delivery System) assessment of onboard water supplies. (Updated 'cue cards' based on the crew's water calldowns are sent up every other week. The current cue card (16-0018Y), to be updated today, lists 37 CWCs (~1483.4 L total) for the four types of water identified on board: technical water (800.4 L, for Elektron, flushing, hygiene), potable water (647.2 L), condensate water (32.3 L), waste/EMU dump and other (3.7 L). Of the 37 containers, 13 CWCs with technical water (569.4 L) cannot be used until cleared for Wautersia bacteria, and 4 CWCs with potable water (176.3 L) are not cleared for use pending analysis of samples returned on 1J/A.)

The CDR also deactivated and tore down the IWIS (Internal Wireless Instrumentation System) setup used yesterday for measuring structural dynamics data during Soyuz docking.

Yuri Malenchenko performed the periodic (currently daily) checkout/verification of IP-1 airflow sensors in the various station hatchways, including the FGB-to-Soyuz tunnel, DC1-to-Soyuz vestibule and FGB-to-Node1 passageway.

For Reisman's first session with the BRASLET experiment, scheduled tomorrow, Peggy and Garrett gathered the necessary equipment, particularly Garrett's cuffs. (For the SDTO (Station Development Test Objective) scan session, the FE-2 has to abstain from caffeine 12 hrs prior to the scan session, heavy meals 4 hrs before and any food at all 2 hrs prior to the scan, plus no exercise 2 hours before and no liquids 30 mins before. SDTO-17011 'Validation of On-Orbit Methodology for the Assessment of Cardiac Function and Changes in the Circulating Volume Using Ultrasound and Braslet-M Occlusion Cuffs (Braslet)' is a collaborative effort between NASA and the Russian FSA (Federal Space Agency), with the goal to establish a valid ultrasound methodology for assessing a number of aspects of central and peripheral hemodynamics and cardiovascular function, specifically in rapid changes in intravascular circulating volume. Braslet uses Braslet-M occlusion cuffs, i.e., the Russian-made operational countermeasure already pre-calibrated and available onboard for each ISS crewmember. Braslet employs multiple modes of ultrasound imaging and measurements, in combination with short-term application of Braslet-M occlusive cuffs and cardiopulmonary maneuvers (Valsalva, Mueller) to demonstrate and to evaluate the degree of changes in the circulating volume on orbit. This will be accomplished by performing echocardiographic examinations in multiple modes (including Tissue Doppler mode), ultrasound measurements of lower extremity venous and arterial vascular responses to Braslet-M device under nominal conditions and also during cardiopulmonary Mueller and Valsalva maneuvers. Identical measurements will be repeated without Braslet-M, with Braslet-M applied, and immediately after releasing the occlusion device.)

Sergei gathered measurements for the regular atmospheric status check for ppCO2 (pp Carbon Dioxide) in the Lab, SM (at panel 449) and COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), using the hand-held CDMK (CO2 Monitoring Kit, #1002). Batteries were to be replaced if necessary.

At ~4:05pm, Reisman is to set up and activate the VDS MPC (Video Distribution System/Multi-Purpose Converter) with its four downlinks to allow the ground to 'pull down' accumulated HDTV (high-definition TV) footage of yesterday's arrival of Soyuz 16S. Later (~5:15pm), the MPC will be powered off again.

Malenchenko and Kononenko relocated the three Emergency SODF (Station Operations Data Files) books from Soyuz 16S into the 15S vehicle and updated the ISS EMER-1 SODF with new pages delivered on 16S. (TMA-12 delivered two new ODF books (VC-14, RPS ISS16/17 Handover) and nine packages of updates to existing books (Med Ops, Med Equipment, Tech Exps, PHOTO, Science Exps, ODF ROMs, Laptop Connectivity Recovery).)

Volkov performed the routine daily maintenance of the SOZh (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) system in the SM, including the ASU toilet facilities systems/replaceables.

Later today, Sergei will work on the IMS (Inventory Management System), updating/editing its standard 'delta file', including locations, for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).

Reisman had another 60 minutes for himself for general orientation (station familiarization & acclimatization) as is standard daily rule for the first two weeks after starting station residency.

The crewmembers completed their regular 2.5-hr. physical workout program (about half of which is used for setup & post-exercise personal hygiene) on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (CDR), TVIS treadmill (CDR, FE-1/fulltime, FE-2), and RED resistive exercise device (FE-2).

Afterwards, Garrett was to download the crew's exercise data file to the MEC for downlink, as well as the daily wristband HRM (Heart Rate Monitor) data of the workouts on RED, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week).

Working off the discretionary 'time permitting' task list, Yuri Malenchenko -

performed the regular daily checkup on the Japanese experiment GCF-JAXA (Granada Crystallization Facility) in the Russian TBU incubator, maintained at +20 degC, including a temperature check on its ART (automatic temperature recorder), and
serviced the BIO-5 Rasteniya-2 ("Plants-2") experiment, which researches growth and development of plants (peas) under spaceflight conditions in the Lada-12 greenhouse from IBMP (Institute of Bio-Medical Problems {Russian: IMBP}), by monitoring the greenhouse, taking pictures and downloading them to the ground.
At ~1:00pm EDT, Peggy Whitson & Garrett Reisman engaged in three interactive PAO TV interviews with U.S. media clients,- WCBS News (Steve Scott), CBS Newspath (Gerry Mazza) and WHO-TV (Patrick Dix).

Handover Update: Handover activities between E16 & E17 crewmembers are designed to cover a large variety of onboard systems & operations, including Safety, Communications, Video & Audio, Life Support (SOZh), US Segment, TORU/Teleoperator Control, EVA Tools, ATV Status, Science Hardware, Medical Equipment, Iridium-9505A phone, CISN (Crew Informational Support System), BVS/Onboard Computer System, etc. FE-1 Malenchenko has 13:15 hrs scheduled for equipment preparation for return & disposal stowage on Soyuz 15S, with 3 hrs of assistance by Sergei Volkov.

Return Procedures Preps: After the Soyuz TMA-11 descent review on 4/7, a test of the Soyuz MCS (Motion Control System (SUD) is scheduled for 4/14, followed on 4/15 by the standard descent OBT/drill.

CEO photo targets uplinked for today were Luquillo Forest, Puerto Rico (good near-nadir pass. A swath of overlapping images was requested), Santa Maria Volcano, Guatemala (looking right, between ISS track and the prominent Lake Atitlan. Santa MarĂ­a volcano had been inactive for at least 500 to several thousand years. But on October 25, 1902 it erupted violently following a series of earthquakes--as one of the largest eruptions of the twentieth century. Skies were darkened over Guatemala for days, with ash detected as far away as northern California. The eruption tore a gaping hole in the south flank of the cone -which is still visible as a vegetationless zone (due to intense rainfall erosion). A massive new lava dome known as Santiaguito has been growing within the crater since the eruption. Dome growth has been accompanied by almost continuous minor explosions, with periodic lava extrusion, larger explosions, pyroclastic flows, and mud flows), and Santa Barbara Coast, California (the main objective is to document land cover and the rapid land use change on a seasonal basis. Shooting a mapping swath left and right of track along the coastline, noting any features in the near offshore).

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