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December 27, 2009
ISS On-Orbit Status 12/27/09

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Sunday – crew rest day. Ahead: Week 5 of Increment 22.

FE-4 Oleg Kotov started the day with the regular daily checkup of the aerosol filters at the Elektron O2 generator. [The filters were installed by FE-1 Suraev 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 Jeff Williams completed another Reaction Self Test (Psychomotor Vigilance Self Test on the ISS) protocol. [The RST is performed twice daily (after wakeup & before bedtime) for 3 days prior to the sleep shift, the day(s) of the sleep shift and 5 days following a sleep shift. A total of 121 RST runs are assigned to Jeff for the duration of his orbital stay.]

The CDR & FE-5 Noguchi supported the weekly U.S. “Bisphosphonates” biomedical countermeasures experiment, ingesting an Alendronate pill before breakfast. [The Bisphosphonates study should determine whether antiresorptive agents (that help reduce bone loss) in conjunction with the routine in-flight exercise program will protect ISS crewmembers from the regional decreases in bone mineral density documented on previous ISS missions. Two dosing regimens are being tested: (1) an oral dose of 70 mg of Alendronate taken weekly starting 3 weeks prior to flight and then throughout the flight and (2) an intravenous (IV) dose of 4 mg Zoledronic Acid, administered just once approximately 45 days before flight. The rationale for including both Alendronate and Zoledronic Acid is that two dosing options will maximize crew participation, increase the countermeasure options available to flight surgeons, increase scientific opportunities, and minimize the effects of operational and logistical constraints. The primary measurement objective is to obtain preflight and postflight QCT (Quantitative Computed Tomography) scans of the hip. The QCT scans will provide volumetric bone density information of both cortical and trabecular (spongy) bone regions of the hip.]

Oleg Kotov spent some time at the TVIS treadmill to observe Maxim Suraev unstowing, using and restowing the exercise machine in the SM (Service Module) floor. [New crewmembers routinely receive training from experienced crew on the use of the exercise equipment - one session for each apparatus.]

Suraev performed 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-Moscow. [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.]

Maxim also checked up on the Russian POTOK-150MK (150 micron) air filter unit of the SM’s SOGS air revitalization subsystem, gathering weekly data on total operating time & “On” durations for reporting to TsUP.

An additional task for the FE-1 in the SM was a routine inspection of the SVO SRV-K2M Condensate Water Processor hoses from the MFR Diaphragm Separator Filter to the BRPK Condensate Separation & Pumping Unit (having replaced the latter on 12/21).

Later, Suraev unstowed and set up the equipment for the periodic Russian PZE-MO-10 "Hematokrit" testing which is scheduled tomorrow for him & Williams. [MO-10 measures the hematocrit (red blood cell mass) value of the blood (it is a well-known phenomenon of space flight that red blood cell mass {normal range: 30-45%} tends to go down over time).]

Oleg Kotov configured the work area for the Russian science payload BIMS (MBI-22) and unstowed the hardware for his session tomorrow. MBI-22 runs, which Oleg also did during his 2007 ISS stay tenure, involve otoscopic, nasal, dental and dermatological exams for evaluating the skin and mucous membranes for any changes over long-duration space missions. [BIMS objective is to conduct several experimental sessions in the RS (Russian Segment) for filming skin portions and mucous membranes of crewmembers. It is part of a comprehensive research into using telemedical technologies for getting information from distant space crews for medical support of human space missions and information for life science flight studies. The BIMS experiment uses image capturing (video & still photo), an otoscope (or auriscope - the familiar medical device for visualizing the outer & middle ear, nose and upper throat area), the RSE-med A31p laptop and PCMCIA memory cards, with data files downlink via BSR-TM to study small skin sites, conduct otorhinolaryngologic examinations (external acoustic meatus, eardrums, nasal passages), and do stomatologic (i.e., medical study of mouth and its diseases) examination of gums and teeth.]

Today was PFC (Private Family Conference) day for all crewmembers, via S-band/audio and Ku-band/MS-NetMeeting application (which displays the uplinked ground video on an SSC laptop), for Soichi at ~2:40am, Oleg at ~5:55am, Max at ~7:35am, Jeff at ~12:20pm, TJ at ~3:30pm EST.

Williams & Suraev worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise on the TVIS treadmill (FE-1), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-1), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR), and VELO ergometer bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-1).

The voluntary US “job jar” task list for TJ, Jeff & Soichi for today showed the periodic replacement of the EDV-U urine container in the WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment).

The Russian discretionary task list for Maxim & Oleg for today called for –
  • the pending inventory/audit of the contents of the K1 & K2 equipment bags in the MRM2 (Mini Research Module 2),
  • another session for Russia's EKON Environmental Safety Agency, making observations and taking KPT-3 aerial photography of environmental conditions on Earth using the Nikon D3X digital camera,
  • a photography run of the GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program with the NIKON D3X with SIGMA AF 300-800mm telelens of glaciers & icebergs in the vicinity of the Kerguelen Islands, Heard Island, the area of the Crozet Islands, general scenic photography of the Andes with emphasis on the western Chilean slope, and Patagonian ledniki (glaciers), and Glaciers of South Georgia Islands glaciers, and
  • another picture-taking session for the DZZ-13 “Seiner” ocean observation program, using the NIKON D2X digital camera (80-400 mm lens) and the HDV (high-definition video) camcorder at a specific time to obtain data on water bloom patterns in the waters of south eastern part of the Pacific ocean, subantarctic front of the South Atlantic ocean, and current atmospheric conditions above them. [It is mandatory for Maxim to record his voice commentary while filming, giving information on the exact time when bioluminescence is detected, glow variations depending on cloud pattern, and his recommendations as to what procedure to use for observation.]

Kibo THC Reset: On 12/24 & 12/25, THC (Temperature & Humidity Control) cabin fan “b” in the JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) was stopped by the automated FDIR (Failure Detection, Isolation & Recovery) which detected a WS (Water Separator) overspeed transient. Ground control switched the “a” fan from Normal to High to support sufficient airflow and turned off the JPM’s “b” smoke detector. Intramodular ventilation and smoke detection in the Kibo module are active but currently without redundancy until engineers determine next steps.

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

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 8:08am EST [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 338.9 km
Apogee height – 344.2 km
Perigee height – 333.6 km
Period -- 91.31 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.64 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0007881
Solar Beta Angle -- 22.9 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.77
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 65 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 63,642

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
01/05/10 -- PMA-3 relocation
01/11-12/10 -- ESP-3 relocation
01/14/10 -- Russian EVA-24
01/21/10 -- 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
03/18/10 -- Soyuz TMA-16/20S undock/landing
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
03/18/10 -- STS-131/Discovery/19A – MPLM(P), LMC (~1:30pm EST)
04/02/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S launch – Skvortsov (CDR-24)/Caldwell/Kornienko
04/04/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-----------------
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)
05/10/10 -- Progress M-04M/36P undock
05/31/10 -- Soyuz TMA-17/21S undock/landing
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
06/14/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S launch – Wheelock (CDR-25)/Walker/Yurchikhin
06/16/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-----------------
07/xx/10 -- US EVA-15
07/xx/10 -- Russian EVA-25
06/28/10 -- 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
09/15/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S undock/landing
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 – Kelly (CDR-26)/Kaleri/Skripochka
10/xx/10 -- Russian EVA-26
10/26/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P undock
10/27/10 -- Progress M-09M/41P launch
10/29/10 -- Progress M-09M/41P docking
11/15/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing
11/30/10 -- Soyuz TMA-21/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
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