Encyclopedia Astronautica
2007.11.28 - ISS On-Orbit Status 11/28/07

FE-2 Dan Tani continued servicing the CSLM-2 (Coarsening in Solid-Liquid Mixtures 2) experiment on its second session.

(The FE-2 configured the hardware to allow the ground to perform ground commanding to the MLC (Microgravity Science Glovebox Laptop Computer) for diagnostic testing and to develop recovery steps for the ECU (Electronic Control Unit) to be reprogrammed correctly.)

FE-1 Yuri Malenchenko performed a thorough 2-hr. troubleshooting inspection & verification of the connections of the Russian segment's Onboard Cabling System (BKS) to the FGB's Thermal Control System (SOTR). (Using the Nikon D200 digital camera, Yuri documented the SOTR layout behind panel 215 and checked connector pins for dirt or misalignment.)

Later, Malenchenko prepared for the upcoming activation of the Russian/ESA BIO-3 experiment payload by conducting a search for a suitable PCMCIA (Portable Computer Memory Card International Adapter) storage card. (A new PCMCIA card is required for BIO-3 due to the loss of an earlier PCMCIA with BIOKIN, AT-Space and P-KINASE data. BIO-3, delivered on Soyuz 15S, is the latest in a series of ESA's BIO payload system which makes use of the KUBIK incubator facility, currently the 'facility of choice' for this program. BIO-1, delivered on 12S (March 2006) comprised six experiments that gave almost 100% of expected output. BIO-2 followed in the second half of 2006 as part of the ESA Astrolab mission aboard ISS, with the three experiments LEUKIN-2, BASE-A, and YING-A. In support of LEUKIN, new payload deliveries included the PGB (Portable Glovebox) for containment. The new BIO-3 will include three separate experiments. Development of BIO-4 is underway.)

After the overnight fine leak check of the Lab/Node-2 vestibule and Node-2 aft hatch interface, CDR Whitson spent about 20 min. on terminating the check, repressurizing the vestibule and ingressing the Node-2. (The leak check indicated slight leakage, i.e., an observed pressure decay of 95.8 mmHg over 15 hrs 16 min, which is above the 30 mmHg criterion over an 8-hour period. This equates to ~0.7 lbs of air per day at 3.3 psi, and ~3.1 lbs per day at 14.7 psi.)

Continuing Node-2 interior outfitting, Whitson then installed the IMV (Intermodular Ventilation) valve jumper in the vestibule, opened Harmony's starboard hatch latches to their hardstop position to test the mechanism (hatch remaining safely closed due to pressure differential), and deployed two new SSCs (Station Support Computer) laptops in Node-2 (SSC-11 & SSC-12).

Also in Node-2, FE-2 Tani installed and checked out the CBCS (Centerline Berthing Camera System) at the starboard hatch in preparation for Columbus' berthing during 1E, after rerouting the necessary power line from UOP-3 (Utility Outlet Panel 3) in Node-2 to a Y-cable disconnected from the failed UOP-1. (The electronics extension cable from the CBCS was then disconnected to avoid its hatch dragthrough for safety.)

Peggy meanwhile worked in the Joint Airlock (A/L) on preparations for the 1E spacewalks, by -

Removing LiOH (Lithium Hydroxide) CO2 absorber cans #2016 & #2023 from EMUs (Extravehicular Mobility Units) #3018 & 3006,
Plugging vent ports in the EMUs and capping the LiOH openings,
Prepacking the used LiOH cans for return to Earth,
Resizing EMU #3018 for Stan Love (EV3 on 1E),
Continuing gathering EVA tools required during the spacewalks, and
Checking out three PGTs (Pistol Grip Tools), replacing batteries as necessary.
Yuri Malenchenko inspected the KOV de-ionized water container (EDV), used for supplying water to the Elektron oxygen (O2) generator for electrolysis, for bubbles and possible need for filling up with U.S. condensate from a CWC (Contingency Water Container). (Air bubbles larger than ~10 mm in the water must be prevented from getting into the BZh Liquid Unit where they could cause Elektron shutdown.)

Afterwards, Yuri supported the ground's reactivation of the Elektron O2 generator at 32 amps by monitoring the external temperature of its secondary purification unit (BD) for the first 10 minutes of operations to ensure that there was no overheating. Yesterday, the FE-1 had installed an EMI (Electro-Magnetic Interference) filter on the Elektron's current stabilizer (FPP ST-64). (During nominal operations a gas analyzer is utilized to detect hydrogen (H2) in the O2 line (which could cause overheating) but is not included in the control algorithm until 10 minutes after Elektron startup.)

Malenchenko set up the hardware and took a 'refresher' course of the onboard 'Profilaktika' (MBI-8, 'Countermeasures') preventive health maintenance fitness test, scheduled to start tomorrow and running through Friday. (Test procedure for MBI-8, which requires workouts on the VELO and TVIS, is identical to the Russian MO-5 assessment, but in addition to the nominal procedure it uses the TEEM-100M gas analyzer with breathing mask, a blood lactate test with the ACCUSPORT analyzer and REFLOTRON-4 accessories, and a subjective evaluation of physical exertion levels during the test (using the Borg Perceived Exertion Scale, viz., 10 steps from very light over hard and very hard to maximum). Results are entered on a log sheet. TEEM and ECG (electrocardiograph) data are transferred to the RSE-Med Laptop, also on a tape cassette (Cardiocassette-2000), and prepared for later downlink via Regul-Packet comm. Results are also called down to specialists standing by at TsUP.)

As part of his regular physical fitness evaluation, the FE-1 undertook the Russian MO-5 MedOps protocol of cardiovascular assessment during graded physical load on the VELO cycle ergometer, his first, assisted by his CDR as CMO (Crew Medical Officer). (The assessment uses the Gamma-1 ECG equipment with biomed harness, skin electrodes and a blood pressure and rheoplethysmograph cuff wired to the cycle ergometer's instrumentation panels. For the graded-load exercise, the subject works the pedals after a prescribed program at load settings of 125, 150, and 175 watts for three minutes each. Data output involves a kinetocardiogram, rheoplethysmogram, rheoencephalogram and a temporal pulsogram.)

Dan Tani sampled the Node-2 atmosphere by collecting air samples with the MAS (Microbial Air Sampler) kit at mid-module and later also by using the SSK (Surface Sample Kit) for sampling at locations near air diffusers. (Bacterial and fungal air samples are usually taken at two locations in the module being checked. The colony growth on the MAS sampling slides is analyzed after five days of incubation in four Petri dishes. For onboard visual analysis of media slides from SSK (Surface Sampling Kit), the crew has a procedure for visual inspection of samples for bacterial and fungal colony growths after appropriate incubation periods.)

Yuri performed the periodic activation of the gas analyzer in the Soyuz TMA-11/15S, docked to the FGB Nadir port.

Dan ran the periodic check of active U.S. payloads, i.e., cleaning the ANITA (Analyzing Interferometer for Ambient Air) inlet plus inspecting and filter cleaning of the CGBA-5 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 5) incubator payload. (The incubator is controlled from the ground with automatic video downlinked to Earth.)

At ~1:05pm EST, Peggy and Yuri tagged up with ground specialists to discuss the downlinked imagery from their recent RPM (R-Bar Pitch Maneuver) photo/video operations.

Later today, at sleeptime, Malenchenko will start another data take with the new Russian MBI-12 SONOKARD (Sonocard) experiment, his third. (During sleep, Yuri will wear a shirt with the special SONOKARD device in the shirt pocket. The objectives of the experiment are stated to (1) study the feasibility of obtaining the maximum of data through computer processing of records obtained overnight, (2) systematically record the crewmember's physiological functions during sleep, (3) study the feasibility of obtaining real-time crew health data. Investigators believe that contactless acquisition of cardiorespiratory data over the night period could serve as a basis for developing efficient criteria for evaluating and predicting adaptive capability of human body in long-duration space flight.)

The FE-1 completed the daily routine maintenance of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM (Service Module), including ASU toilet facilities systems/replaceables. (Regular daily SOZh maintenance consists among else of replacement of the KTO & KBO solid waste containers and replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers.)

Yuri also conducted the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance again as a voluntary task from his 'time permitting' discretionary task list, updating/editing its standard 'delta file' including stowage locations, for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).

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 (FE-2), TVIS treadmill (CDR, FE-1), RED resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-2) and VELO bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-1).

Dan Tani's treadmill workout was recorded by video camcorder for biomechanical assessment of the hardware status by ground engineers. Peggy and Yuri had their video sessions yesterday. Afterwards, the CDR transferred the footage from camcorder to VTR (Video Tape Recorder) for subsequent downlink to the ground via Ku-band.

Dan also copied the exercise data file to the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) laptop for downlink, including 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).

At ~1:35pm, the FE-2 supported two live 'crew choice' PAO TV interview exchanges with two stations in Chicago, WFLD-TV (Patrick Elwood) and WLS Radio (Jerry Agar).

Array Deflection Test: At ~1:08pm, MCC-H conducted a remote-commanded deflection test on U.S. solar arrays due to thermal dynamics during insolation & eclipse (orbital day & night). The Channel 1A array was parked for about 30 min., and video of the array motion was captured by MSS (Mobile Service System) cameras. No exercise was allowed during this time.

Voluntary Weekend Science: Five optional activities for the voluntary 'Saturday Science' program for next weekend (12/2) were suggested to Peggy and Dan for their choice. Selection is required ASAP. (The five choices are: (1) SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites), flying two & three satellites, requiring 2 video camcorders & 2 VTRs; (2) EPO (Educational Payload Operation) ISS Tour/Living Area Demo; (3) HRF 1 RIC (Human Research Facility 1 Rack Interface Controller) software load; (4) BCAT-3 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test-3) Magnet Unstick, using the CGBA-4 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus-4), powered up 12 hrs before to initiate cooling; and (5) CGBA/CSI-02 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus Science Insert 2), sowing PDA (Plant Development Habitat) with new seeds)

Node-2 ISL Router Installation: 'Ping' tests onboard and now also from the ground have shown that Dan Tani's completion of ISL (Integrated Station LAN) installation in Node-2 yesterday was a success.

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today were Heard Island (Heard Island is a bleak, uninhabited, and mountainous island located in the Southern Ocean; about two-thirds of the way from /Madagascar to Antarctica. Its mountains are covered in glaciers and dominated by Mawson Peak, a 9,006 ft high complex volcano which forms part of the Big Ben massif. A long thin spit named "Elephant Spit" extends from the east of the island. ISS pass was just before midday with weather satellite imagery suggesting clearing from the west. Looking well right of track and using the long lens for details), Kerguelen (this glaciated and volcanic archipelago is located in the far south Indian Ocean nearly 2,000 miles SE of the island of Madagascar. Of primary interest is photography for monitoring of the rarely photographed ice field and glaciers located on the western end of the main island. ISS had a nadir pass approaching from the west in mid-afternoon light. Trying for a mapping pass of the western ice field), and S. Georgia/S. Sandwich (the South Georgia Island is an arching, mountainous and glaciated island that lies about 860 miles east-southeast of the Falkland Islands. The South Sandwich Islands form a separate island group and are to the SE. Weather was marginal, but the crew was to try for detailed views of the glaciers on the north coast of South Georgia. ISS pass was in late morning, and the crew was to shoot well right of track).

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