The six-member Expedition 37 crew is keeping busy with science experiments and maintenance work while it waits for three more crew members. It is a busy week with three Expedition 38 crew members arriving Thursday morning, a spacewalk Saturday morning and the departure of three Expedition 37 crew members Sunday.
Flight Engineer Mike Hopkins worked throughout the day on different tasks. He spent the morning collecting water samples and transferring fluids through a condensate pump. After an interview with the Weather Channel and KSDK-TV in St. Louis, Mo., he worked the rest of the afternoon on a treadmill for its monthly and yearly maintenance and worked with the InSPACE experiment.
Flight Engineer Karen Nyberg joined Hopkins for the live television interview after lunch. Then, she conducted a run of the ongoing SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellites) experiment which uses student-written algorithms to control small satellites onboard the International Space Station. This set of experiment runs involved alternating command of the bowling ball-sized satellites with investigators on the ground using a new graphical user interface. In the morning, she and Flight Engineer Luca Parmitano partnered up for eye exams with remote guidance from the ground.
Parmitano and Nyberg also had time set aside preparing for their return home Sunday. Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin, who will also be commander of their Soyuz TMA-09M for its landing in Kazakhstan, continued stowing gear and trash inside the vehicle. They are ending a 5-1/2 month stay in space that began in May.
Parmitano and Nyberg also had time set aside preparing for their return home Sunday. Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin, who is joining them for their landing in Kazakhstan aboard the Soyuz TMA-09M spacecraft, continued stowing gear and trash inside the vehicle. They are ending a 5-1/2 month stay in space that began in May.
Expedition 38 Flight Engineers Mikhail Tyurin, Koichi Wakata and Rick Mastracchio are undergoing final preparations at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan, for their launch Wednesday at 11:14 p.m. EST. They will dock to the Rassvet module in just four orbits, or six hours later, inside the Soyuz TMA-11M spacecraft Thursday morning. The trio is delivering the Olympic torch that will light the flame at the opening of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.
Cosmonauts Oleg Kotov and Sergey Ryazanskiy will carry the Olympic torch outside the space station when they conduct a spacewalk Saturday morning. The duo checked out their Russian Orlan spacesuits, installed gear and tried them on inside the Pirs docking compartment.
Parmitano, Nyberg and Yurchikhin will return the torch the very next day inside their Soyuz. After they undock from the Zvezda service module Sunday at 6:26 p.m. Expedition 38 will officially begin with Kotov beginning his second command of the station.