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December 07, 2009
ISS On-Orbit Status 12/07/09

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Underway: Week 2 of Increment 22.

Crew sleep/wake cycle was slipped today by 3.5 hrs to accommodate tonight’s undocking of the MRM2 PAO (Mini-Research Module 2 / Propulsion/Service Module) at 7:16pm: Wakeup was delayed from 1:00am to 4:30am, and sleeptime tonight begins at 8:00pm (until 4:30am tomorrow morning).

FE Suraev began the day with the regular daily checkup of the aerosol filters at the Elektron, installed by him on 10/19 in gaps between the BZh Liquid Unit and the oxygen outlet pipe (filter FA-K) plus hydrogen outlet pipe (filter FA-V). [Photographs are to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

CDR Williams started another week-long session of the experiment SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight), donning his Actiwatch, from which to log data to the HRF-1 (Human Research Facility 1) laptop. [To monitor the crewmembers’ sleep/wake patterns and light exposure, the crewmembers sometimes wear a special Actiwatch device which measures the light levels encountered by them as well as their patterns of sleep and activity throughout the Expedition and use the payload software for data logging and filling in questionnaire entries in the experiment’s laptop session file on the HRF-1 laptop. The log entries are done within 15 minutes of final awakening for seven consecutive days.]

In support of payload operations, Williams activated the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox).

In the COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), the CDR began his third Ambulatory Monitoring session of the ESA ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular) experiment, preparing the two Actiwatches, electrode sites, attaching the harness and donning the Cardiopres. [ICV activities consist of two separate but related parts over a one-week time period: an ultrasound echo scan & an ambulatory monitoring session. Today, wearing electrodes, the HM2 (Holter Monitor 2) for recording ECG (Electrocardiogram) for 48 hours, the ESA Cardiopres to continuously monitor blood pressure for 24 hours, and two Actiwatches (hip/waist & ankle) for monitoring activity levels over 48 hours, Jeff started the ambulatory monitoring part of the ICV assessment. During the first 24 hrs (while all devices are worn), ten minutes of quiet, resting breathing are timelined to collect data for a specific analysis. PGT (Pistol Grip Tool)/Makita batteries were switched as required. The nominal exercise includes at least 10 minutes at a heart rate ≥120 bpm (beats per minute). After 24 hrs, the Cardiopres is doffed and the HM2 HiFi CF Card and AA Battery are changed out to allow continuation of the session for another 24 hours. After data collection is complete, the Actiwatches and both HM2 HiFi CF Cards are downloaded to the HRF PC1, while Cardiopres data are downloaded to the EPM (European Physiology Module) Rack and transferred to the HRF PC1 via a USB key for downlink. The sessions are scheduled at or around FD14, FD30, FD75, FD135 and R-15 (there will be fewer sessions if mission duration is less than six months). The FD75 echo scan will include an exercise component with a second scan (subset of the first) completed within 5 minutes after the end of exercise. The primary objective of the accompanying CCISS (Cardiovascular Control on return from the ISS) experiment is to maximize the information about changes in cardiovascular and cerebrovascular function that might compromise the ability of astronauts to meet the challenge of return to an upright posture on Earth.]

FE Suraev configured the equipment for his second session with the Russian experiment DYKHANIE (MBI-18, “Respiration”) and undertook the test, controlled from the RSE-Med laptop and supported by ground specialist tagup. Maxim then closed down the hardware and stowed it. [Dykhanie-1 uses two body belts (PG-T/thoracic, PG-A/abdominal), a calibrator, resistor, mouthpiece, etc., to study fundamental physiological mechanisms of the external breathing function of crewmembers under long-duration orbital flight conditions. During the experiment, physiological measurements are taken and recorded with a pneumotachogram, a thoracic pneumogram, an abdominal pneumogram, and pressure data in the oral cavity. All experimentally derived plus salient environmental data along with personal data of the subject are recorded on PCMIA card for return to the ground at end of the Expedition. Objectives include determining the dynamics of the relationship between thoracic (pectoral) and abdominal breathing function reserves and their realization potential during spontaneous breathing, the coordinated spontaneous respiratory movements in terms of thoracic and abdominal components of volumetric, time & rate parameters of spontaneous respiratory cycle, identification of the features of humoral-reflex regulation of breathing by dynamics of ventilation sensitivity of thoracic and abdominal components to chemoreceptor stimuli, etc. Overall, the experiment is intended to provide a better understanding of the basic mechanisms of pulmonary respiration/gas exchange gravitational relations of cosmonauts.]

Other service/maintenance activities by the Russian Flight Engineer today included –
  • Activating the gas analyzer in the Descent Module (SA) of the Soyuz-TMA-16/20S crew return vehicle, docked at the SM (Service Module) aft port, a periodic checkup,
  • Conducting an audit/inventory of CD & DVD disks in their SM stowage location, guided by an uplinked listing of 31 disks,
  • Completing the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM [including 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],
  • Performing the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance, 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), and
  • Turning off MRM2 PAO (Propulsion/Service Module) telemetry monitoring from the Progress US-17 matching unit in preparation for PAO undocking at ~7:16pm.

The crew worked on OpsLAN-assigned SSC (Station Support Computer) Client laptops to prepare them for the upcoming E22 OpsLAN (Operations Local Area Network) reload, relocating their personal data to other network locations for preservation, as desired, since the reload of the SSC Clients will wipe all old files. Problems were encountered, and ground teams are reviewing failure signatures. [OPSLAN File Server reload uses the new T61p laptops, which will make OpsLAN inaccessible from next Friday to Saturday. IPV (International Procedures Viewer) will be put on a laptop for crew access for Friday’s activities.]

Over the weekend, the station residents got started on the CSL (Crew Support LAN) for Internet access and are about 60% complete with this activity. Due to some error messages received today, new files will be uplinked to ensure that corrupted files are not the cause. [CDR Williams will be doing this on his own time, as this is on the timeline only later in the Increment.]

Williams initiated (later terminated) another 5-hr automatic sampling run, the 52nd, with the EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health System Gas Chromatograph/Differential Mobility Spectrometer), also known as AQM (Air Quality Monitor), controlled with “Sionex” expert software from the SSC-4 laptop. [The AQM demonstrates COTS (Commercial Off-the-Shelf) technology for identifying volatile organic compounds, similar to the VOA (Volatile Organics Analyzer). Today’s data will again to be compared with VOA and GSC (Grab Sample Container) measurements. This evaluation will continue over the course of several months as it helps to eventually certify the GC/DMS as nominal CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) hardware.]

Jeff also completed the periodic maintenance & visual inspection of the ARED (Advanced Resistive Exercise Device) and its VIS (Vibration Isolation System) rails & rollers, greasing the Y- and Z-axis rails & rollers and also evacuating its cylinder flywheels to maintain proper vacuum condition and sensor calibration.

At ~12:40pm EST, Jeff & Max downlinked PAO TV messages to be used by CBS News in an interesting news series, “Everybody in the World has a Story”, in planning for 2010, in accordance with a Space Act Agreement signed by NASA and CBS News.

Williams & Suraev performed their regular 2-hr physical exercise on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (CDR), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE), and T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (FE).

Later, Jeff transferred the exercise data files to the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) for downlink, including the daily wristband HRM (Heart Rate Monitor) data of the workouts on ARED, followed by their erasure on the HRM storage medium (done six times a week).

For tonight’s 5R PAO Module undocking, ISS attitude control authority will be handed over to RS MCS (Motion Control System) at 6:25pm EST. It will be returned to US CMG MM (momentum management) at 8:15pm. The CDR has closed the protective shutters of the Lab & Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) science windows, to remain closed until two orbits after the handover back to US MM (to allow thruster effluents to disperse in space).

At ~7:00pm EST, Maxim will activate the VKU2 TV monitor and SSC1 in the SM to monitor and record the undocking and separation of the PAO from the MRM2, followed by downlinking the recorded video via OCA.

The FE will also turn on the Russian TEKh-15/DAKON-M IZGIB (“Bend”) experiment hardware in the SM to take structural dynamics data during the undocking operation. Afterwards, DAKON will be deactivated again. [IZGIB has the objective to help update mathematical models of the ISS gravitation environment, using accelerometers of the Russian SBI Onboard Measurement System, the GIVUS high-accuracy angular rate vector gyrometer of the SUDN Motion Control & Navigation System and other accelerometers for unattended measurement of micro-accelerations at science hardware accommodation locations - (1) in operation of onboard equipment having rotating parts (gyrodynes, fans), (2) when establishing and keeping various ISS attitude modes, and (3) when performing crew egresses into space and physical exercises.]

No CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today.

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 8:39am EST [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 340.8 km
Apogee height – 345.9 km
Perigee height – 335.6 km
Period -- 91.35 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- -51.64 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0007662
Solar Beta Angle -- -64.8 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.76
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 58 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) -- 63327

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time, some changes possible!):
12/07/09 -- MRM2 PAO (Propulsion/Service Module) jettison for destructive reentry – 7:16pm
12/20/09 -- Soyuz TMA-17/21S launch -- O. Kotov/S. Noguchi/T.J. Creamer – 3:51pm
12/22/09 -- Soyuz TMA-17/21S docking @ FGB nadir -- 4:58pm
01/14/10 -- Russian EVA-24
01/20/10 -- Soyuz TMA-16/20S relocation (from SM aft to MRM-2)
02/03/10 -- Progress M-04M/36P launch
02/05/10 -- Progress M-04M/36P docking
02/07/10 -- STS-130/Endeavour/20A – Node-3 “Tranquility”+Cupola (target date)
03/18/10 -- Soyuz TMA-16/20S undock/landing
03/18/10 -- STS-131/Discovery/19A – MPLM(P), LMC (~1:30pm EST)
04/02/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S launch
04/27/10 -- Progress M-03M/35P undock
04/28/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P launch
04/30/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P docking
05/14/10 -- STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM-1 (~2:00pm EST)
05/29/10 -- Progress M-04M/36P undock
05/29/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S launch
06/30/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P launch
07/02/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P docking
07/26/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P undock
07/27/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P launch
07/29/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P docking
07/29/10 -- STS-134/Endeavour (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS-02) (~7:30am EST)
08/30/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P undock
08/31/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P launch
09/02/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P docking
09/16/10 -- STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) (~12:01pm EST)
09/18/10 -- STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) docking
09/22/10 -- STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) undock
09/30/10 -- Soyuz TMA-20/24S launch
10/26/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P undock
10/27/10 -- Progress M-09M/41P launch
10/29/10 -- Progress M-09M/41P docking
11/30/10 -- Soyuz TMA-21/25S launch
12/15/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P undock
02/08/11 -- Progress M-09M/41P undock
02/09/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P launch
02/11/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P docking
03/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/26S launch
xx/xx/11 – Progress M-11M/43P launch
05/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-23/27S launch
12/??/11 -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton