Encyclopedia Astronautica
2008.06.21 - ISS On-Orbit Status 06/21/08


Saturday - lightened-duty day for CDR Volkov, FE-1 Kononenko and FE-2 Chamitoff.

Today is Kononenko's 44th birthday.


Happy Birthday, Oleg Dmitriyevich!

Volkov & Kononenko completed a review of flight procedures plus the standard 3-hr. training drill for a Soyuz TMA-12/16S relocation from the DC1 Docking Module to the FGB nadir port, supported by ground specialists via tagup on S-band/VHF-audio. (Should 'Pirs' fail to repressurize after ingress of the two spacewalkers on 7/11, a relocation of the Soyuz, docked to the DC1 nadir port with FE-2 Chamitoff already safely locked out in the 16S Descent Module, would become necessary. In addition, for the relocation the three crewmembers and the spacecraft will have to be prepared for a return to Earth in the event of a no-docking contingency, and the station has to be configured for uncrewed operation (for which intense planning is underway at NASA, ESA, and TsUP-Moscow). Today's 3-hr. OBT (on-board training) included Soyuz procedures and data analysis for ascent/descent, orbital flight and relocation as contained in RODF (Russian Operations Data File) books, tag-up with instructor, OBT simulator work on the RSK1 laptop, etc. It is assumed that Soyuz activation would be performed on 7/11 over RGS (Russian Groundsite) on DO13 (Daily Orbit 13), closure of hatch on DO15, undocking from DC1 on DO2 (~5:28pm EDT on 7/11), flyaround (~5:34pm) and redocking at FGB at ~5:56pm (DO2).)

Afterwards, the crew performed the regular weekly three-hour task of thorough station cleaning. ("Uborka", usually done on Saturdays, includes removal of food waste products, cleaning of compartments with vacuum cleaner, damp cleaning of the Service Module (SM) dining table, other frequently touched surfaces and surfaces where trash is collected, as well as the FE's sleep station with a standard cleaning solution; also, fan screens and grilles are cleaned to avoid temperature rises. Special cleaning is also done every 90 days on the HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) bacteria filters in the Lab.)

The CDR conducted the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM, including the weekly collection of the toilet flush (SP) counter and water supply (SVO) readings for calldown to TsUP. (Regular daily SOZh maintenance consists, among else, of checking the ASU toilet facilities, replacement of the KTO & KBO solid waste containers and replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers.)

Volkov also gathered weekly data on Total Operating Time & 'On' durations of the Russian POTOK-150MK (150 micron) air filter unit of the SM's SOGS air revitalization subsystem for reporting to TsUP.

Greg Chamitoff filled out the regular FFQ (Food Frequency Questionnaire), his second, on the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer). (On the FFQs, NASA 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.)

At ~10:00am EDT, the crewmembers held their regular WPC (Weekly Planning Conference) with the ground, discussing next week's "Look-Ahead Plan" (prepared jointly by MCC-H and TsUP timeline planners) via S-band/audio, reviewing the monthly calendar, upcoming activities, and any concerns about future on-orbit events.

After setting up the Lulin-ISS radiation complex kit yesterday with its ICU (Interface Control Unit, Russian: BUI) for recharging the batteries of the four PILLE radiation dosimeters, Oleg today checked on the battery charges and reported to the ground, then disassembled and stowed the equipment.

Chamitoff performed the regular bi-monthly reboot of the OCA Router and File Server SSC (Station Support Computer) laptops.

For his Voluntary Weekend Science (VolSci) program today, Gregory conducted his first session with the LOCAD-PTS (Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System) payload, first conducting an OBT review and PI teleconference, then sampling/swabbing five surface sites for yeast & molds, using Glucan LAL cartridges and a Negative Control sample of clean water. (LOCAD uses small, thumb-sized 'microfluidic' cartridges that are read by the experiment reader. The cartridges contain dried extract of horseshoe crab blood cells (LAL/Limulus amebocyte lysate) and colorless dye. LAL tests are used for the detection and quantification of bacterial endotoxins: in the presence of the bacteria, the dried extract reacts strongly to turn the dye a green color. Therefore, the more green dye, the more microorganisms there are in the original sample. Glucans are complex carbohydrate (sugar, D-glucose) macromolecules. The handheld device tests this new analysis technology by sampling for the presence of gram negative bacteria in the sample in about 15 minutes, showing the results on a display screen. Background: Lab-on-a-Chip technology has an ever-expanding range of applications in the biotech industry. Chips are available (or in development) which can also detect yeast, mold, and gram positive bacteria, identify environmental contaminants, and perform quick health diagnostics in medical clinics. The technology has been used to swab the MERs (Mars Exploration Rovers) for planetary protection. With expanded testing on ISS, began by Sunita Williams in March/April last year, this compact technology has broad potential applications in space exploration--from monitoring environmental conditions to monitoring crew health. The current study should prepare for long-duration exploration by demonstrating a system that enables the crew to perform biochemical analysis in space without having to return samples to Earth.)

The three crewmembers conducted 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 (FE-2), TVIS treadmill (CDR, FE-1), RED resistive exercise device (CDR, FE-1, FE-2), and VELO bike with bungee cord load trainer (CDR, FE-1).

Afterwards, Gregory transferred 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).

The Russian crewmembers had their weekly PFCs (Private Family Conferences) via S-band/audio and Ku-band/MS-NetMeeting application (which displays the uplinked ground video on an SSC laptop), Oleg at ~6:30am (receiving birthday congrats from his wife and two children), Sergey at ~8:05am.

Working off his suggested 'time permitting' task list, CDR Volkov performed another session of the Russian GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program using the NIKON D2X still camera and the Japanese HDV (High Definition) video camera provided by SFP Charles Simonyi. (Uploaded targets were general views of the Pyrenees, the Alps-Sudetes-Tatras-Carpathians mountain chain , the Desna & Seym river confluence, steppes to the south of Voronezh, the valley of one of the Central Chernozem area rivers running from the north to the south to the Volga-Don delta, the Yasnyi launch site in nadir, remediation efforts of the former Soviet Army firing range in Germany, Ugra National Park, the hydrological situation on the Volga-Aktyubinsk alluvial plain, the coastal strip of the Aral Sea, tips of Pamir glaciers to the west, Fedchenko glacier, Karakorum glaciers, scenic photography of the Himalayas, detailed photography of the Himalayas tallest mountain peaks, the valley of one of the rivers in Moldova in nadir, the Kerch Strait, vestiges of flooding in the Stavropol Territory, the Mzymta river estuary near Adler, glaciers on the northern slope of the Caucasus Range in an area from the Elbrus to Kazbek, woodlands near northern shore of Sevan lake, glaciers near arc-shaped water reservoir dams on the south shore of Rhone river falling into the Lake of Geneva from the east, and general coastline views of the Balkans and Greece with her islands.)

For Kononenko, the Russian voluntary task list suggested another ECON KPT-3 session for today, making observations and taking aerial photography of environmental conditions for Russia's Environmental Safety Agency (ECON) using the Nikon D2X digital camera with SIGMA 300-800mm telephoto lens. (Today's target zones: Lake Balkash and the Aral Sea.)

Still remaining on the voluntary task list item for Kononenko & Volkov today was an audit of expired Expedition 16 food rations, with repacking & preparation of food packages for disposal on the ATV. (To clear storage space for cargo items delivered on Progress M-64/29P.)

HRM Troubleshooting: Troubleshooting attempts by the crew on a Heart Rate Monitor have not been successful as yet. Planning for more is underway.

COL Labeling Discrepancies: A total of eight fire ports in the COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) have been found to be labeled differently from the printed COL Emergency Procedures. This may put the crew at risk. Work is underway at COL-CC to determine best choice of correcting the discrepancies (either relabeling or reprinting the procedures).

SKV Restoration Outlook: For the restoration of the two Russian SKV air conditioners, both currently nonfunctional, plans are to attempt a recharge of SKV-2 with Khladon (Freon-218) in early July, timeline permitting. The retry could cause an additional leak but the crew will cap it as quickly as possible (if required, would also use Khladon from SKV-1). Check valves of both SKVs are post-EOL (end-of-life). New heat exchangers are being built in Russia for both SKVs, to be ready by the end of the year. US CCAA (Common Cabin Air Assembly) air conditioners are currently active in the Lab (P6), in Node-2 and in the Airlock.

Weekly Science Update (Expedition Seventeen -- Week 9)

PADLES (Passive Dosimeter for Lifescience Experiment in Space): In progress.

ALTCRISS (Alteino Long Term monitoring of Cosmic Rays on the ISS): Measurements continue in FGB module.

ANITA (Analyzing Interferometer for Ambient Air): Continuing.

BCAT-3 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test 3): Reserve.

CARDIOCOG-2: Completed.

CCISS (Cardiovascular & Cerebrovascular Control on Return from ISS): Reserve.

CFE (Capillary Flow Experiment): Reserve.

CW/CR (Cell Wall/Resist Wall) in EMCS (European Modular Cultivation System): In progress.

CSI-2/CGBA (CGBA Science Insert #2/Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus): In progress.

CGBA-2 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 2): Complete.

CSLM-2 (Coarsening in Solid-Liquid Mixtures 2): Complete.

EarthKAM (Earth Knowledge Acquired by Middle School Students): Complete.

ELITE-S2 (Elaboratore Immagini Televisive - Space 2): Planned.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations): Reserve.

ETD (Eye Tracking Device): Completed.

EuTEF (European Technology Exposure Facility): In progress.

FSL (Fluid Science Laboratory): In progress.

GEOFLOW: In progress.

IMMUNO (Neuroendocrine & Immune Responses in Humans During & After Long Term Stay at ISS): Complete.

InSPACE-2 (Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions 2): In progress.

Integrated Immune: In progress.

KUBIK-FM1/ KUBIK-FM2 Centrifuge/Incubators: Completed.

LOCAD-PTS (Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System): Complete.

MISSE (Materials ISS Experiment): Ongoing.

MTR-2 (Russian radiation measurements): Passive dosimeters measurements in DC1 'Pirs'.

MULTIGEN-1: Completed.

MSG-SAME (Microgravity Science Glovebox): Complete.

NOA-2 (Nitric Oxide Analyzer): Planned.

NUTRITION w/REPOSITORY: 'Greg, thank you for your efforts in completing the FD15 session. We appreciate the attention to detail in maintaining blood timeline constraints.'

PMDIS (Perceptual Motor Deficits in Space): Complete.

SAMS/MAMS (Space & Microgravity Acceleration Measurement Systems): Ongoing.

SAMPLE: Inc16 samples have been downloaded with 15S and handed over to science team.

SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight): 'Greg, next week you will have your first Sleep Actiwatch download/initialization session. Due to a recent hardware issue in the previous crew rotation, we have spaced out your Actiwatch download task and Actiwatch initialization task to allow time for a downlink and verification of the data in between. This will allow the Sleep Experiment Support Scientist to verify the data before you initialize the Actiwatch, which is an operation that starts to overwrite the previous period's data.'

SOLAR (Solar Monitoring Observatory): In progress.

SOLO: Planned.

SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellite): In progress.

Swab (Characterization of Microorganisms & Allergens in Spacecraft): Complete.

3-D SPACE : In progress.

TRAC (Test of Reaction & Adaptation Capabilities): Planned.

ULTRASOUND: Planned.

WAICO #1 (Waving and Coiling of Arabidopsis Roots at Different g-levels): In progress.

CEO (Crew Earth Observations): Through 6/16 the ground has received a total of 2,124 of ISS/CEO images for review and cataloging. No imagery was received since the last crew change and the resumption of CEO Target Lists on 6/17. 'We look forward to working with you and helping you acquire good imagery of our science targets. Any feedback on our products and how we are doing in our support would be most welcome!'

CEO (Crew Earth Observations) photo targets uplinked for today were Madrean Sky Islands, New Mexico (this target is located in the northern reaches of Mexico's Sierra Madre Occidental which boast some of the richest biodiversity anywhere in North America. The 'Sky Islands' are a veritable archipelago of cool, moist, higher-altitude pine-oak forested mountain ranges that dot the hot deserts of southern Arizona ""€New Mexico ""€northwestern Mexico. These climatological islands, situated in remote and rugged areas, are being heavily modified by logging. General images were requested for this relatively new site), East Haruj Megafans, Libya (ancient, now defunct rivers (sourced in the Tibesti Mountains to the south of the site when the Sahara Desert was much wetter) have laid down vast spreads of sediment as a series of large fans hundreds of km long and wide. As rivers shifted position they produced networks of criss-crossing stream channels covering the entire surface of megafans. Earth's megafans may be the best analog for widespread 'intercrater plains' on Mars. This analog is being applied for the first time in ongoing research), .and Mississippi River flooding (Dynamic event. ISS passed directly over sectors of the Mississippi River where levee breaks have occurred. Cloud cover may break sufficiently to allow views of the river. Looking left and then right of track for about 1.5 mins).

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