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07-21-2012
July 21, 2012
ISS On-Orbit Status 07/21/12

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.     Saturday – Crew light duty.  Sleep cycle shift (1 hr fwd) –  Sleep: 6:30pm (last night); wake: 3:00am today; sleep: 5:30pm (back to normal).   Today one year ago (2011), Shuttle Atlantis landed at KSC, marking the end of the magnificent 30-year Space Shuttle Program.

  • HTV3 (H-II Transfer Vehicle 3) Launch:   The H-IIB carrier rocket with the HTV3 launched successfully from the Tanegashima Space Center in Japan last night at 10:06 pm EDT.  HTV3 activation and initial checkout were completed successfully after launch.  HTV3 capture & berthing are scheduled for 7/27.

At wakeup, Sergei Revin performed the routine inspection of the SM (Service Module) PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection.

FE-3 Acaba had Day 2 of his 2nd (FD30) suite of sessions with the controlled Pro K diet protocol (Dietary Intake Can Predict and Protect against Changes in Bone Metabolism during Spaceflight and Recovery) with diet logging after the urine pH spot test, for a 5-day period after start of collections. After recording his diet input today, Joe will begin the urine collections for pH value on Monday (7/23) and blood sampling on Tuesday (7/24). [For Pro K, there are five in-flight sessions (FD15, FD30, FD60, FD120, FD180) of samplings, to be shared with the NUTRITION w/Repository protocol, each one with five days of diet & urine pH logging and photography on the last day (science sessions are often referred to by Flight Day 15, 30, 60, etc. However, there are plus/minus windows associated with these time points so a “Flight Day 15” science session may not actually fall on the crewmember’s 15th day on-orbit). The crewmember prepares a diet log and then annotates quantities of food packets consumed and supplements taken. On Days 4 & 5, urine collections are spread over 24 hrs; samples go into the MELFI (Minus Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS) within 30 min after collection. Blood samples, on the last day, are centrifuged in the RC (Refrigerated Centrifuge) and placed in MELFI at -80 degC. There is an 8-hr fasting requirement prior to the blood draw (i.e., no food or drink, but water ingestion is encouraged). MELFI constraints: Maximum MELFI dewar open time: 60 sec; at least 45 min between MELFI dewar door openings.]

Later in the day, FE-6 Hoshide unstowed the Pro K pH kit and prepositioned it with controlled diet menu items and daily consumables in preparation for his upcoming first (FD15) Pro K Controlled Diet activity, starting tomorrow with the first pH test and diet log entry.

Padalka, Revin, Acaba, Malenchenko, Williams & Hoshide joined in conducting the regular weekly three-hour task of thorough cleaning of their home, including COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) and Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module). ["Uborka", usually done on Saturdays, includes removal of food waste products, cleaning of compartments with vacuum cleaner, damp cleaning of the SM dining table, other frequently touched surfaces and surfaces where trash is collected, as well as the sleep stations 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.]

As part of Uborka house cleaning, Sergei & Gennady also completed regular weekly maintenance inspection & cleaning of fan screens in the FGB (TsV2) plus Group E fan grilles in the SM (VPkhO, FS5, FS6, VP), and the grilles of the BMP Harmful Contaminants Removal System and SKV air conditioner in the SM.

In COL, for her on-going first Ambulatory Monitoring session of the ESA ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular), FE-5 Williams reached midpoint at about 7:30am EDT, after which she began the second 24h data collection period, with Makita batteries swapped and recharged during the day. [For the second 24 hr period, the Cardiopres was temporarily doffed and the HM2 HiFi CF Card and AA Battery were 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). (ICV activities consist of two separate but related parts over a one-week time period: an ultrasound echo scan & an ambulatory monitoring session.)]

The CDR performed the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM.      [Regular daily SOZh maintenance consists, among else, of checking the ASU toilet facilities, replacement of the KTO & KBO solid waste containers, replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers and filling EDV-SV, KOV (for Elektron), EDV-ZV & EDV on RP flow regulator.]

Joe Acaba conducted the regular (~weekly) inspection & maintenance, as required, of the CGBA-4 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 4) and CGBA-5 payloads in their ERs (EXPRESS Racks) at Lab O2 & O1, focusing on cleaning the muffler air intakes.

At ~9:00am EDT, the entire crew held the regular WPC (Weekly Planning Conference) with the ground, discussing next week's "Look-Ahead Plan" (prepared jointly by MCC-H and TsUP-Moscow timeline planners), via S-band/audio, reviewing upcoming activities and any concerns about future on-orbit events.

At ~11:10am, Aki Hoshide had his daily post-launch PMC (Private Medical Conferences), via S- & Ku-band audio/video.

FE-3 & FE-5 conducted 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), Joe at ~12:15pm, Suni at ~3:40pm, EDT.

Williams & Hoshide brushed up on their ARED exercise proficiency by watching Joe Acaba use the machine, and Aki also observed Joe working out on the CEVIS cycle.

The crew worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-3, FE-5), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (CDR, FE-2, FE-4), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-3), and VELO ergometer bike with load trainer (FE-2, FE-4).

UPA Failure:   The UPA (Urine Processor Assembly) failed last night, requiring the ground to switch the WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment) from UPA to storage in the internal EDV container.  While engineers are discussing a forward plan, the internal EDV is expected to have sufficient capacity until tomorrow before it is filled.

Tasks listed for Revin & Padalka on the Russian discretionary “time permitting” job for today were –
  • A ~30-min. 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 camera with the RSK-1 laptop,
  • EKON Earth photography of the current flooding conditions in Russia’s Kuban region, and
  • More preparation & downlinking of reportages (written text, photos, videos) for the Roskosmos website to promote Russia’s manned space program (max. file size 500 Mb).

Weekly Science Update (Expedition Thirty-Two – Week 3).

2D NANO Template (JAXA): Mission completed.

3D SPACE: Complete.

ALTCRISS (Alteino Long Term monitoring of Cosmic Rays on the ISS): Complete.

ALTEA SHIELD Shielding (NASA/ASI): On GMT160, André successfully relocated the ALTEA instrument from Destiny to Columbus. He reconfigured the instrument in the so-called “shielding” configuration. The first measurement session was started right away, aiming at characterizing dedicated shielding tiles. On GMT201, one of the Silicon Detector Units (SDU #1) went off. SDU#1 is required for scientific data acquisition and, at the time of this reporting, the recovery of the unit is being worked. To date, 40 cumulative days of measurements have been performed. Session#1 must be pursued for a minimum of 40-60 cumulative days, hence the minimum required duration on the first location has been met. [Cosmic radiation consists of very small, atomic-sized particles that are flying around in space at tremendous speeds. Their energy is so high that these particles, like tiny bullets, can permeate through the complete structure of the ISS. Exposure of astronauts to cosmic radiation is risky from a medical point of view. The best way to protect our astronauts against cosmic radiation is to build the complete ISS from lead! This would solve the problem but the enormous mass can impossibly be launched into space. Therefore different materials, much lighter than lead, are being tested to be used as shielding materials. Two of those will be investigated in the ALTEA-SHIELD experiment. The effectiveness of the shielding materials will be measured on board by a set of special radiation detectors. Some detectors will be covered with tiles made of shielding materials, some others will not. We are looking forward to find out what difference it will make!”]

Amine Swingbed (NASA): The Amine Swingbed team is continuing the fault tree analysis, and the leading indicator to the anomaly experienced on in June is that the design of our control circuit is not providing sufficient power to the Swingbed valve motor.  This, combined with the motor speed limitations programmed into the software/firmware, is not allowing the motor to provide enough torque to overcome resistive forces within the valve.  Position sensor misalignment cannot be ruled out without on orbit troubleshooting.

AMS-02 (Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer): No report.

APEX (Advanced Plant Experiments on Orbit) -Cambium: No report.

APEX-TAGES (Transgenic Arabidopsis Gene Expression System): No report.

Asian Seed 2010 (JAXA): Returned on ULF6.

BASS (Burning and Suppression of Solids, NASA): This week we performed six tests.  In the first test, we tested if a burning flat fabric sample could be blown out just using a high air flow.   In the second test, we reversed the flame direction and repeated the test.   In both tests, the flame was able to survive the high flow rate and consumed the entire sample.  The third and fourth tests studied the flammability limits of two different kinds of nomex that are not flammable on earth in air.  One sample, at low flow, ignited briefly but extinguished, and the other one, at high flow, did not ignite.   Since this sample ignited and burned at a lower flow rate, we attribute this to the cooling effect of the flow.   A fifth ultem film sample was also tested for flammability, and ignited but self-extinguished before any significant flame spread occurred.  Notice the difference in the flow effects for samples that are burning versus samples that are igniting.  If a flame is present, this range of flows enhances the heat transfer and helps sustain the flame.  However, for samples trying to ignite, the flow acts to cool the sample, making it harder for the sample to ignite.   Lastly, a previously-burned acrylic sphere was tested in the wake configuration.  The igniter broke before ignition was achieved.    We have 3 of 9 igniters remaining, but we are making some contingency plans including using SPICE igniters and modifying spent igniters from the used flat sample tests.

BCAT-6 (Binary Colloidal Alloy Test 6): No report. [Colloids are particles as small as a few tens of nanometers (a thousandth of a thousandth of a millimeter) that are suspended in a medium, usually a liquid or a gas. The name “colloid” comes from the Greek word for “glue”, and expresses very important properties of colloids: when small and light enough, particles can be influenced in their behavior by forces of electromagnetic origin, and make them stick together, or repel each other depending on the configuration. Colloids are widely studied in science because the forces between particles can be controlled and tuned and because particles, while being small enough to be influenced by such forces, are big and slow enough to be seen with a relatively simple and inexpensive laboratory instrument like a microscope. This is why colloids are often studied as model for molecular systems (like standard gases or liquids) where molecules, the individual constituents, are much smaller than colloids and cannot be seen with light. As mentioned, forces between colloids can be tuned giving rise to a rich variety of phenomena. One of them is aggregation, which is when particles stick together and tend to form structures. Among the many ways to induce particle aggregation, one allows to do so by controlling the temperature of the solution in which the particles are immersed, thanks to very weak forces called “critical Casimir forces” that have been predicted more than 30 years ago but just partially verified in experiments. The objective of SODI COLLOID is to measure such forces and produce a controlled aggregation of tiny plastic particles. This would allow to shed light on critical Casimir forces and to make a step towards the fabrication of new nanostructured materials with remarkable optical properties for industrial applications.]

BLB (Biolab, ESA): No report.

BIORHYTHMS (JAXA, Biological Rhythms): No report.

BISE (CSA, Bodies in the Space Environment): No report.

BISPHOSPHONATES: No report.

BXF-Facility (Boiling eXperiment Facility, NASA): No report.

BXF-MABE (Microheater Array Boiling Experiment, NASA): No report.

BXF-NPBX (Pool Boiling Experiment, NASA): No report.

CARD (Long Term Microgravity Model for Investigating Mechanisms of Heart Disease, ESA): No report.

CARDIOCOG-2: Complete.

CB (JAXA Clean Bench): No report.

CBEF-2 (JAXA Cell Biology Experiment Facility)/SPACE SEED: No report.

CCISS (Cardiovascular & Cerebrovascular Control on Return from ISS): No report.

CERISE (JAXA): No report.

CCF (Capillary Channel Flow, NASA): No report.

CFE-2 (Capillary Flow Experiment 2, NASA): No report.

CFS-A (Colored Fungi in Space-A, ESA): No report.

CSI-5/CGBA-5 (CGBA Science Insert #5/Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 5): No report.

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

CIR (Combustion Integrated Rack), MDCA/Flex: No report.

Commercial (Inc 23&24, JAXA): No report.

Commercial (Inc 25 & 26, JAXA): No report.

CSAC (Chip-Scale Atomic Clock, SPHERES): No report.

CSLM-2 (Coarsening in Solid-Liquid Mixtures 2): No report.

CsPins (JAXA): No report.

CubeLab: No report.

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

DECLIC-ALI (Device for the Study of Critical Liquids & Crystallization-ALICE-like, CNES/NASA): Tc (critical temperatures) was confirmed and it is consistent with results obtained in the previous sequence. This week was devoted to the observation of the phase separation process and characterization of the domain growth laws.  Declic will be deactivated on 7/20 15:30. The next Sequence (ALI-SC8) is currently planned from September 3 to September 20.

DomeGene (JAXA): Complete.

DOSIS (Dose Distribution Inside ISS, ESA): Nominal science acquisition with active and passive dosimeters inside Columbus.

EarthKAM (Earth Knowledge Acquired by Middle School Students): No report.

EDR (European Drawer Rack, ESA): No report.

EKE (Endurance Capacity by Gas Exchange and Heart Rate Kinetics During Physical Training, ESA): No report.

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

EMCS (European Modular Cultivation System): “Thanks, André, for your help with the EMCS Relief Valves check.”

ENERGY (ESA): No report. [Background: In the ENERGY experiment, astronauts are invited to participate in a study that aimed to evaluate how much food is needed for astronauts during long-term space missions. To do so, the science team will measure every component or variable of the astronaut's energy expenditure reflecting his energy needs. Those variables will be measured twice: up to 4 months before flight and after at least 3 months in space but 3 weeks before landing. The changes in the astronaut's energy balance and expenditure will be measured, which will help in deriving an equation for energy requirements in weightlessness. This will contribute to planning adequate, but not excessive cargo supplies for food.]

ENose (Electronic Nose): No report.

EPM (European Physiology Module): Rack activated in support of ENERGY armband data transfers.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations, NASA) (Eye in the Sky; Sleep 2): No report.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations, NASA) (Sesame Street): No report.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations, NASA) (Kids in Micro-G): No report.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations, NASA) (Earth/Moon/Mars Demo): No report.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations, NASA) (Space Sports): No report.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations, NASA) (ISS Orbit): No report.

EPO (Educational Payload Operations, ESA): No report.

EPO CONVECTIONS (ESA): “No report.

EPO MISSION X (ESA): No report.

EPO Spaceship Earth (ESA): No report.

EPO LES-2 (ESA): No report.

EPO GREENHOUSE (ESA): No report.

EPO 3-min Video (JAXA): No report.

EPO J-Astro Report (JAXA): No report.

EPO Dewey’s Forest (JAXA): Closed out on 3/15.

EPO Space Clothes (JAXA): Complete.

EPO Hiten (Dance, JAXA): No report.

EPO Lego Bricks (NASA, JAXA): No report.

EPO Moon Score (JAXA): No report.

EPO OpticSphere & ISSOrbit-Demo (NASA): No report.

EPO Kibo Kids Tour (JAXA): Complete.

EPO Paper Craft (Origami, JAXA): No report.

EPO Poem (JAXA): No report.

EPO-5 SpaceBottle (Message in a Bottle, JAXA): No report.

EPO-6 Spiral Top 2 (JAXA): No report.

EPO-7 Doctor Demo (JAXA): No report.

EPO-7 Green Tea Preparation (JAXA): No report.

EPO-7 Ink Ball (JAXA): No report.

EPO-7 Video (JAXA):

EPO-7 Try Zero-G (JAXA): No report.

EPO-8 Space Sakura (JAXA): No report.

EPO-8 Space Musical Instruments (JAXA): No report.

ERB-2 (Erasmus Recording Binocular, ESA): [ERB-2 aims are to develop narrated video material for various PR & educational products & events, including a 3D interior station view.] No report.

ETD (Eye Tracking Device): Completed.

FACET-2 (JAXA): No report.

FERULATE (JAXA): No report.

FIR/LMM/CVB (Fluids Integrated Rack / Light Microscopy Module / Constrained Vapor Bubble): No report.

Fish Scales (JAXA): Completed on FD7/ULF-4 and returned on STS-132.

FOAM STABILITY EPO (ESA): No report.

FOCUS: No report.

FSL (Fluid Science Laboratory, ESA): After the update of the FSL Central Experiment Module (CEM) software on GMT194, during the ATV-reboost event on GMT200 Microgravity Measurement Assembly (MMA) and Microgravity Vibration Isolation Subsystem (MVIS) data acquisition was performed (ground-only activities). The downlink of MMA files went fine, while MVIS files were found to be corrupted after downlink. Engineering assessment is on-going.

FWED (Flywheel Exercise Device, ESA): No report.

GENARA-A (Gravity Regulated Genes in Arabidopsis A/ESA): No report.

GEOFLOW-2 (ESA): Experiment completed! [Background: Everybody is familiar with liquids. In an average day we get to use, handle or drink water or other liquids. And everybody knows how fluids (that is liquids and gases) behave: when subjected to a net force, may be pressure, a temperature difference or gravity, they can move freely. Scientists have been studying how fluids move for centuries, and managed to write mathematical formulas that can describe and predict such movements. Unfortunately, these equations are extremely complex and only approximate solutions are known. As a result, our quantitative understanding of fluid movement is just partial. This is especially true for natural phenomena where the forces can be enormous and unpredictable, like in oceans or in the atmosphere, or the interior of the earth, where rocks are exposed to pressures and temperatures so incredibly high that they slowly move and adapt their shape. That is, over hundreds of years rocks flow just like a very viscous liquid. Scientists try to study such flows but cannot observe them directly due to the fact that they take place deep beneath the surface of our planet. The only way is to have computers simulating those movements starting from the equations, but how to check whether computers are correct? This is what Geoflow II is trying to answer on board the International Space Station. Geoflow II is a miniature planet that has some of its essential ingredients: a fluid can freely move inside a spherical container that rotates, has temperature differences and has a simulated gravity directed towards the centre just like in a real planet. By taking pictures of the fluid movements, scientists are able to understand the essential characteristics of the flows and determine whether computer simulations are correct or whether they need to be refined and improved towards a better understanding of the elusive movements that take place inside our planet.]

HAIR (JAXA): No report.

HDTV System (JAXA): No report.

Hicari (JAXA): No report.

Holter ECG (JAXA): No report.

HQPC (JAXA): No report.

HREP (HICO/Hyperspectral Imager for the Coastal Ocean & RAIDS/Remote Atmospheric & Ionospheric Detection System/JAXA): HICO has taken 6037 images to-date.  The most recent HICO images include parts of Australia, Japan, Hawaii, and the U.S. Pacific coast.   RAIDS is continuing to collect secondary Science data including nighttime atmospheric disk photometry, spectra and temperatures.  Extreme Ultra Violet airglow spectroscopy and optical contamination studies will also be performed.

HRF-1 (Human Research Facility 1, NASA): No report.

HydroTropi (Hydrotropism & Auxin-Inducible Gene Expression in Roots Grown under Microgravity Conditions/JAXA): No report.

ICE CRYSTAL (JAXA): Complete.

ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular): No report.

IMMUNO (Neuroendocrine & Immune Responses in Humans During & After Long Term Stay at ISS): No report.

INTEGRATED IMMUNE: No report.

InSPACE-3 (Investigating the Structure of Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions 3): Inspection of the vials was completed and pictures are under review by the ground team.

IRIS (Image Reversal in Space, CSA): No report.

ISS Amateur/Ham Radio: No report.

ISSAC (ISS Agricultural Camera, NASA): ISSAC operations were nominal, captured 1,108 images that span 22,160 km.  In addition to our primary science, ISSAC captured imagery of Assam floods and sites in California to support USGS water quality research. Image processing and quality assessment will be performed asap.

IV Gen (Intravenous Fluids Generation): No report.

JOURNALS (Behavioral Issues Associated with Isolation and Confinement, NASA): “The PI would like to thank you for your recent Journal entries. He has expressed that you're doing a great job and how much he appreciates the diligence you're showing in completing your entries. He looks forward to the next downlink of your entries.” [Studies conducted on Earth have shown that analyzing the content of journals and diaries is an effective method for identifying the issues that are most important to a person. The method is based on the reasonable assumption that the frequency that an issue or category of issues is mentioned in a journal reflects the importance of that issue or category to the writer. The tone of each entry (positive, negative, or neutral) and phase of the expedition also are variables of interest. Study results will lead to recommendations for the design of equipment, facilities, procedures, and training to help sustain behavioral adjustment and performance during long-duration space expeditions to the ISS, asteroids, the Moon, Mars, and beyond. Results from this study could help to improve the behavioral performance of people living and working under a variety of conditions here on Earth.]

KID/KUBIK6: No report.

KUBIK 3/6 (ESA): No report.

LMM/PACE-2 (Light Microscopy Module / Preliminary Advanced Colloids Experiment): No report.

LOCAD-PTS (Lab-on-a-Chip Application Development-Portable Test System): No report.

MAMS (Microgravity Acceleration Measurement System, NASA): No report.

Marangoni Exp. (JAXA): “Joe, thank you for VRU HDD exchange (Marangoni experiment), on GMT 199.  On GMT 197, MEIS 5-9 run was successfully completed via ground commanding. MEIS 5-10, 5-11, 5-12 and 5-13 will also be performed via ground commanding this week.”

Marangoni DSD – Dynamic Surf (JAXA): Payload name was change from Marangoni DSD to Dynamic Surf.

Marangoni UVP (JAXA): No report.

MARES (Muscle Atrophy Research & Exercise System, ESA/NASA): No report.

Matryoshka-2 (RSA): No report.

MAXI (Monitor of All-sky X-ray Image, JAXA): External payload. Continuing telemetry monitoring. VSC Imagery was downloaded via ground activity on 7/2 and 7/4.  MAXI MRDL data has been back on normal.

MDCA/Flex-2: Last week we reported four MDCA/FLEX-2 Quiescent test points performed on GMT 191. The test points used 100% decane fuel and were performed at a 1.0-atm chamber environment of 14% oxygen and 86% nitrogen. Some surprising observations were made for these test points:  Despite the low oxygen concentration (14%) of these test points, we observed sustained combustion for fuel droplets of diameters less than 2.0 mm.  We observed radiative extinction for surprisingly small droplet diameters (i.e., around Do = 1.75 mm). Radiative extinction is flame extinction caused by excessive radiative energy loss from the flame, and it occurs at relatively larger droplet and flame sizes.  Surprisingly, recent testing performed at lower pressures (i.e., 0.5 atm) and at the same low oxygen concentration (14%) showed longer burning times, by as much as 2-3 times.

MEIS (Marangoni Experiment for ISS) in JAXA FPEF (Fluid Physics Experiment Facility): No report.

MELFI (Minus Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS, NASA): “Joe: Thanks for all the effort on the EU R&R. MELFI1 is cooling nominally.”

Microbe-2 (JAXA): Sample returned by ULF6.

Micro-G Clay (JAXA EPO): Complete.

Miscible Fluids in Microgravity (MFMG): No report.

MISSE-8 (Materials ISS Experiment 8): MISSE-8 ReflectArray, HyperX and SEUXSE-II experiments continue with nominal operations. PASCAL is nominal but no IV curves of the solar cells were taken this week.  The SpaceCube experiment is running code for new radiation hardening by software.  No Communications Interface Board resets have occurred in recent weeks.

MMA (JAXA/Microgravity Measurement Apparatus): No report.

MPAC/SEED (JAXA): No report.

MSG-SAME (Microgravity Science Glovebox-Smoke Aerosol Measurement Experiment): No report.

MSPR (Multi Purpose Small Payload Rack, JAXA): On 6/13, Don completed greasing the QDs of the MSPR Work Volume and Combustion Chamber QD successfully, thank you very much.

MSL (Materials Science Laboratory, ESA): Three processed Sample Cartridge Assemblies (SCA’s) have been returned with SpX-D.

MTR-2 (Russian radiation measurements): Passive dosimeters measurements in DC-1 “Pirs”.

MULTIGEN-1: Completed.

MYCO 3 (JAXA): On 9/22, Mike and Satoshi completed sample collection.

MyoLab (JAXA): Completed on 4/20.

NanoRacks (NASA): No report.

NANOSKELETON (Production of High Performance Nanomaterials in Microgravity, JAXA): No report.

NEURORAD (JAXA): No report.

NEUROSPAT (ESA/Study of Spatial Cognition, Novelty Processing and Sensorimotor Integration): No report. [During microgravity stay, the human body goes through multitude of physiological changes in order to accommodate to the new environment. As the brain is a master organ where major crucial processes take place, it is fundamental to understand how it manages adaptation for living in Space. One of the main purposes of Neurospat (NES) experiment is to focus on how microgravity environment influences cerebral activity of astronauts aboard ISS. For this, the global electrical activity of the brain of the astronaut is measured thanks to electroencephalogram (EEG) technique, while he or she is executing specific tasks through a computer as if it was a kind of videogame. In practice, the astronaut is wearing a specially equipped cap with passive, gel filled electrodes that are in contact with his/her scalp while he or she is performing the specific tasks that we have designed. These are visual-orientation perception and visuo-motor tracking tasks that may be encountered on a daily basis. The tasks allow the study of 5 cognitive processes: Perception, Attention, Memorization, Decision and Action. Besides there are also task-irrelevant images that are showed to the astronaut in order to assess how well he or she processes novel visual stimuli. The electrodes all over the scalp are linked to sensitive amplifiers that allow us to measure small variations of electrical potential between different regions of the scalp. These signals are in turn used to estimate activity in the cerebral cortex related to the task being performed. Also, they serve to identify the mental processes associated with these tasks and to localize in the brain the sources of the underlying neural activity. After analysis of the data we can better understand whether the novel environment of microgravity accompanied by a multitude of stressors may place an increased load on the cognitive capacity of the human brain and whether the sensory signals and motor responses of astronauts are processed and interpreted differently because a new reference frame.]

NightPod (ESA): NightPod images have been presented in a news blog on the ESA PromISSe website: http://blogs.esa.int/promisse/2012/04/05/nightpod/

NOA-1/-2 (Nitric Oxide Analyzer, ESA): Complete.

NUTRITION w/REPOSITORY/ProK: No report.

ODK (Onboard Diagnostic Kit, JAXA): No report.

PACE-2 (Preliminary Advanced Colloids Experiment 2, NASA): (please see under FIR and LMM/PACE-2.

PADIAC (Pathway Different Activators, ESA): No report.

PADLES (JAXA, Area PADLES 6/7; Passive Area Dosimeter for Lifescience Experiment in Space): Continuing radiation data acquisition of 17 Dosimeters installed inside of JEM. This experiment will continue until 30S return.

PASSAGES (JAXA): No report. [PASSAGES is an experiment about the strategies involved in the perception of the world around us. Seeing correctly the world is necessary to success our gestures, our actions, such as catching a ball, stepping an obstacle on the ground or passing through an opened door. In this experiment, we want to know if the strategies involved on Earth continue to be used when the astronaut is in a weightlessness environment for a long period. To investigate this question, the participant sees 3D scenes on the screen of a laptop such as a video game. The scene is a room with an opening which can vary in width. The task of the participant is to decide if yes or no he or she could pass through the aperture without rotating or scrunching the shoulders. The science team uses typical methods from psychophysics and manipulates several factors to highlight the strategies used by the participant. Then, the science team will compare the performances obtained on ground with those obtained onboard.]

PCDF-PU (Protein Crystallization Diagnostic Facility - Process Unit): No report.

PCG (JAXA, Protein Crystal Growth): Mission completed last week.

PCRF (Protein Crystallization Research Facility) Reconfiguration (JAXA): See PCG.

PLSG (Plant Signaling, NASA/ESA): No report.

PMDIS (Perceptual Motor Deficits in Space): Complete.

POLCA/GRAVIGEN (ESA): Complete.

Portable PFS: “Dear Don and André, P-PFS was used for your THERMOLAB sessions on GMT156/157. Please refer to THERMOLAB.”

Pro K: No report.

RadGene & LOH (JAXA): Complete.

RadSilk (JAXA): No report.

Reaction Self Test (RST/Psychomotor Vigilance Self Test on the ISS): “Joe, Suni, and Aki, thank you for your participation in Reaction Self Test, your efforts are greatly appreciated!  Suni and Aki, welcome to Reaction Self Test!  Your first tests are finished, future tests will be every four days throughout your stay, plus any sleep shift or EVA sessions.”

Reversible Figures (ESA):      No report.     [Background:  The objective of this study is to understand the relationship between gravity and depth perception. Another objective is to identify the problems associated with depth and distance perception in astronauts with the goal of developing countermeasures to reduce any associated performance alteration. This experiment investigates cases in which what astronauts might think to see, fails to achieve a correct representation of the environment, namely, optical illusions. Ten ambiguous figures, with or without depth cues, are presented to an astronaut in virtual reality goggles. These figures are ambiguous because they can be seen at first sight in two different ways. The figure does not change, but after some time the brain reverses (flip-flops) its interpretation. The astronaut is asked to look closely at each figure and to indicate with a mouse trackball which view he/she sees first, and when the view flip-flops. The interval between the views will be compared between 1g and 0g conditions. In 0g, the astronaut will do the test while free-floating to eliminate all orientation cues. This experiment will be performed three times pre-flight, then up to six times in-flight, and again three times post-flight. The science team will then compare the results of these tests across these gravitational environments. It is expected that the frequency of flip-flops of figures with depth cues will be different in between 0g and 1g, and that an adaptation to long-term exposure to weightlessness, as well as a re-adaptation to Earth gravity, will take place.]

ROALD-2 (Role of Apoptosis in Lymphocyte Depression 2, ESA): No report. [Background: The ROALD-2 experiment studies how the function of T-cells from the immune system are affected by microgravity and spaceflight. T-cells play an important role in controlling the immune systems response to infection. It has previously been shown that the immune response of astronauts can be reduced following spaceflight and it has also been shown that the activation of T-cells in culture is reduced in microgravity. A series of experiments on T-cells and other immune system cells have been previously performed by different scientific teams on Space Shuttle and the ISS over the last 30 years. The data from these individual experiments provides information which together can be used to understand the mechanisms by which gravity or the absence of gravity can affect T-cell function.]

Robonaut (NASA): No report.

RYUTAI Rack (JAXA): No report.

SAIBO Rack (JAXA): No report.

SAMS/MAMS (Space & Microgravity Acceleration Measurement Systems): No report.

SAMPLE: Complete.

SCOF (Solution Crystallization Observation Facility, JAXA): No report.

SEDA-AP (Space Environment Data Acquisition Equipment-Attached Payload, JAXA): Continuing telemetry monitoring.

SHD (Space Headaches, ESA): “Joe, thank you for filling in the weekly questionnaires. You did your 9th weekly questionnaire on GMT201.”” [Background: The neurologists from Leiden University want to study the question whether the astronauts, while in space, suffer from the headaches. With the help of simple questionnaires the astronauts will register the headache episodes and the eventual accompanying symptoms. The results will hopefully help to characterize the frequency and characteristics of space headache and to develop countermeasure to prevent/minimize headache occurrence during the space flight.]

SHERE II (Shear History Extensional Rheology Experiment II): No report.

SLAMMD (Space Linear Acceleration Mass Measurement Device): No report.

SLEEP (Sleep-Wake Actigraphy & Light Exposure during Spaceflight): No report.

SLICE (Structure & Liftoff In Combustion Experiment): No report. [See under BASS.]

SMILES (JAXA): Continuing telemetry monitoring.

SODI/IVIDIL (Selectable Optical Diagnostics Instrument/Influence of Vibration on Diffusion in Liquids, ESA): No report.

SODI/COLLOID (Selectable Optical Diagnostics Instrument/Colloid): No report.

SODI-DSC (Selectable Optical Diagnostics Instrument/Diffusion & Soret Coefficient, ESA): No report. [Background: Fluids and gases are never at rest. This statement is in apparent contradiction with our experience: when we pour water in a glass and wait until all flows have disappeared and the temperature of the liquid is in equilibrium with that of the room, we see that water appears to be completely at rest. However, if we were able to see the individual molecules of water with a very powerful microscope, we would discover that they are incessantly moving and collide with each other following frantic, random paths even if the liquid appears to be quiescent at naked eye. Scientists are interested in observing and measuring such movements because they reveal important, practical information: how fast does heat propagates in a fluid? How fast do liquid mixtures mix? Such phenomena occur in absence of a macroscopic flow, that is when the fluid appears to be at rest, and are called heat and mass diffusion respectively. While the theoretical prediction of heat and mass diffusion is still quite challenging, its measurement is a standard laboratory practice, but may become extremely difficult or impossible when dealing with mixtures of many liquids, due to the fact that such measurement needs to be carried out when the fluid is quiescent, a condition sometimes impossible to achieve on ground. This is precisely the objective of the SODI DSC experiment carried out on board the International Space Station: the measurement of diffusion in mixtures of liquids. By using very sensitive optical techniques, it will be possible to measure mass diffusion, compare with current theories, and improve our present understanding of how molecules move in liquid mixtures. The results will be used by the large team of scientists involved in the project to try to understand which of the many existing theories for mass diffusion is correctly predicting the experimental behavior.]

SOLAR (Solar Monitoring Observatory, ESA): The platform was in Sun Visibility period (#54) since 6/20 until 7/3. Nominal SOLSPEC measurements. Also some SOLACES spectrum measurements could be performed. Most of the time SolACES is kept at warm temperature to protect it from potential contamination, for thruster events, Soyuz undocking, ATV maneuver.

SOLO (Sodium Loading in Microgravity): No report.

Space-DRUMS (Space Dynamically Responding Ultrasonic Matrix System): No report.

Space Food (JAXA): No report.

SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold, Engage, Reorient, Experimental Satellite): Successfully completed a Smartphone Communication test. The test consisted of 10 minutes of continuous downlink of images and 11 echo commands (10 commands were planned).”

SPHINX (SPaceflight of Huvec: an Integrated eXperiment, ESA): No report.

SPICE (Smoke Point In Co-flow Experiment): No report.

SPINAL (Spinal Elongation): No report.

SPRINT: “Don, great job with your final in-flight Sprint ultrasound scan! Thank you also for your dedication to the Sprint experiment each week for your exercise. The team looks forward to seeing you on R+0. Safe travels home!”

SS-HDTV (Super Sensitivity High Definition Camera, JAXA): Mission completed last week.

STP-H3 (Space Test Program – Houston 3): MHTEX is continuing with a test of the Capillary Pumped Loop (CPL) and the CPL is currently in a steady state.  VADER continues to characterize the performance of the Aerogel blanket attached to the backside of the experiment.   Canary collected data during the 31S docking event this week and continues to analyze data from previous data collections.  DISC has acquired more images this week and is processing images that were taken in previous weeks.

SWAB (Characterization of Microorganisms & Allergens in Spacecraft): No report.

TASTE IN SPACE (ESA): No report.

THERMOLAB (ESA): No report.

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

TREADMILL KINEMATICS: “Thanks, Joe, for your 3rd Treadmill Kinematics session!”

TRIPLELUX-B (ESA): No report.

ULTRASOUND: Planned.

UMS (Urine Monitoring System (NASA): No report.

VASCULAR (CSA): “Don, thank you for successfully completing the second session this week.”

VCAM (Vehicle Cabin Atmosphere Module, NASA): No report.

VESSEL ID System (ESA): Nominal data acquisition with the NorAIS receiver. [Background: As the ISS circles Earth, it has been tracking individual ships crossing the seas beneath. An investigation hosted by ESA in COL module has been testing the viability of monitoring global maritime traffic from the station’s orbit hundreds of kilometers above since June 2010. The ship-detection system being tested is based on the AIS (Automatic Identification System), the marine equivalent of the air traffic control system. Astronauts were instrumental in enabling the COLAIS experiment, which is an in-orbit demonstration project of ESA’s General Support Technology Program. COL was not originally outfitted with VHF antennas to capture the AIS signals; they were installed on the outside of the module during a spacewalk in November 2009, with the remaining piece of hardware, the ERNOBox control computer, installed inside COL along with the NORAIS receiver in May 2010.- The two operational phases with the first receiver from Norway, or NORAIS, which is operated by FFI/Norway, have been extremely successful, with data telemetry received by the N-USOC, in Trondheim, Norway, via ESA’s COL-CC in Germany. Data has been received by NORAIS in almost continuous operation, and all modes of operation have worked extremely well. On a good day, approximately 400,000 ship position reports are received from more than 22,000 different ship identification numbers (Maritime Mobile Service Identity, or MMSI).-- The NORAIS Receiver has a sample mode that can collect the raw signal, digitize it and send it to ground for analysis of signal quality, which is proving very helpful in making additional improvements/ refinements to the system. This is used both to investigate the signal environment and to evaluate the performance of new receiver technologies on the ground. Several hundred data sets have been collected and processed with new candidate algorithms for next generation receivers.-- From the assessment of these data sets, an updated version of the decoder algorithm has been worked. The development benefits from the investigations of the sampled data and ongoing work in other ESA projects. The firmware was uploaded to the NORAIS Receiver through the station’s communications network. This upgrade #1 (“NORAIS Receiver FPGA firmware v18”), was activated on 1/20/2012.-- The on-orbit data of the NORAIS Receiver v18 have been analyzed since and show very good results. The teams are confident in the operation and performance of v18 and have now preliminary results of the comparison of the performance of the upgraded NORAIS Receiver (v18) relative to the version operated prior to the upgrade (v16).-- Changes of the signal environment on ISS can influence the number of correctly decoded messages, which makes it important to compare the results of this upgrade to a period running the old algorithm with a similar background level.-- The daily averages are calculated for 11 days for both receiver versions. For the upgrade, the period considered for comparison is 1/21-1/31/2012, which are the first 11 days of operation. When selecting the period for the reference data it was important to find a period with the same background signal level as the 11 days with the upgraded NORAIS Receiver. The period from 11/27 – 12/7/2011 was. Even though the two 11 day periods are 45 days apart, the ship traffic should not be very different around the world, except for some regions in the north that may be hampered by sea ice.-- The performance has been studied as the average number of decoded messages per day for the current upgrade v18 of the firmware and the original NORAIS Receiver software. The improvement is the ratio of these numbers (so average numbers of messages per day before the upgrade divided by number of messages after the upgrade). The number of messages from ships in various geographic areas shows a variation in the ratio of messages from 1.2 to 2.0, whereas the ratio of MMSI’s ranges from 1.1 to 1.9. The improvement in the Mediterranean is almost a factor of 2.0 in number of messages, and more than 1.6 in number of distinct ships per day. The improvement in other high-traffic zones, at the Gulf of Mexico and East Asia, is even higher.]

VESSEL IMAGING (ESA): No report. [Background: It is known that the ability of blood vessels to vasoconstrict - the ability of the muscular vessel wall to narrow the diameter of the blood vessel - is impaired during and after a human has been in space. "Vessel Imaging" is using the Ultrasound scanner on board the ISS to take images of the five different blood vessels in the lower abdomen and in the legs to study what changes occur to cause the blood vessels to be less able to vasoconstrict. For each vessel, a 5 second scan is performed to observe the blood vessel during several heart beats, followed by a scan where the ultrasound scan-head is tilted to allow a "cut through the blood vessel wall". The same scans are also performed before flight, and these pre-flight images are used as the baseline to which the in-flight data is compared with. The images are analyzed to detect any changes in the blood vessel wall properties, such as wall thickness, elasticity or structure, changes in the size of the blood vessel or blood flow (volume) while the crewmember is in orbit.]

VIABLE (eValuatIon And monitoring of microBiofiLms insidE the ISS Payload Touch, NASA): No report.

VO2max (NASA): No report.

VLE (Video Lessons ESA): No report.

WAICO #1/#2 (Waving and Coiling of Arabidopsis Roots at Different g-levels; ESA): No report.

YEAST B (ESA): No report.

YOUTUBE SpaceLab: No report.

CEO (Crew Earth Observation): Through 7/15 the ground has received 608 of ISS CEO frames from Expedition 32 for review and cataloging.  “We are pleased to report that we have received imagery with times corresponding to our CEO target request time as follows:  Kellogg Biological Station, Michigan - 12 frames - target not acquired.  This session was the first we have received so far where you used the requested lens, a 400mm.  This was a challenging target because it is not visually distinctive for you.  That is why we requested a detailed mapping strip in hopes of acquiring coverage of the target without your actual detecting it yourselves.  Your session began just northwest of where we needed you to begin.  Much of your session's imagery was overlapping (map-able) and that part of your technique was good.  Your focus for the long lens was pretty good but your focus will become crisper with time and practice.  For our part we will try to give you better visual cues the next time we request this target.  We really appreciate your efforts to acquire our targets.   We were very pleased to discover your recent imagery of the area of flooding in the Krasnodar area of southern Russia, even if it was acquired on your own time before we were able to request it.  It is under evaluation now as an ISS response to an International Charter activation for global disaster areas.  The composition and quality of this photography appears to be excellent.  We also enjoyed your unrequested, hand-held views of some awesome Aurora Australis displays.  We hope to be publishing some of your imagery in the near future.  Please keep up the good work!”

CEO targets uplinked for today were Monaco, Monaco (CAPITAL CITIES COLLECTION:  The tiny Principality of Monaco is a sovereign city-state of just over three-fourths of a square mile in area.  It is located on eastern part of the French Cote d’ Azure, between Nice and the Italian border.  The station’s southeastward, near-nadir pass over this portion of the southern coast of France was in mid-morning light with clear weather expected.  At this time the crew was to begin looking just left of track for this bulge in the coast marked by harbor facilities), Lisbon, Portugal (CAPITAL CITIES COLLECTION:  ISS had a late morning pass over the capital city of Portugal in fair weather.  At this time, as the crew approached the coast from the NW, they were to look towards nadir for the great estuary of the Tagus River.  Greater Lisbon appears as the gray zone on either side of the estuary.  The city center is at the narrow, coastal end of the estuary.  Bridges over the estuary may be also visible), Clearwater Lakes, Quebec, Canada (ISS had a clear weather pass in early morning light for this target located well left of track.  This pair of lake-filled impact structures in northwestern Quebec province is believed to have formed at the same time about 290 million years ago.  At this time as ISS tracked eastward, the crew was to look obliquely left of track for these two circular lakes just east of the arching coastline of southeastern Hudson Bay), Kunene River Fan, Namibia-Angola (ISS had a near nadir pass in clear weather and early afternoon light with approach from the NW.  This large alluvial fan lies between the Kunene River in Angola [north] and Namibia’s Etosha Pan [south] and is subject to periodic flooding from the north.  At this time the crew was to aim slightly right of track and begin a detailed mapping strip of the fan.  Recent floods reached down the length of the fan to Etosha Pan, the low point of the basin.  Open water may still be visible in many parts of the fan), Kellogg Biological Station, Michigan (LONG TERM ECOLOGICAL RESEARCH SITE:  CEO objective for these sites is to document land cover and land use change on a seasonal basis.  The ground asked for the 400 mm lens to differentiate boundaries between land cover and coastal biomes.  The Kellogg site is located in southwest Michigan in the eastern portion of the U.S. Corn Belt, 50 km east of Lake Michigan.  Today’s fair-weather, mid-morning pass tracked southeastward across southern Lake Michigan.  At this time, camera was to be aimed towards nadir, trying for a detailed mapping strip across the target area), Niwot Ridge Tundra, Colorado (LONG TERM ECOLOGICAL RESEARCH [LTER] SITE:  ISS had a near-nadir view of this target area in early morning light with fair weather anticipated.  This LTER site is located in north-central Colorado within the alpine areas above 3,000m just west of Boulder.  As ISS tracked southeastward over the Colorado Rockies, before it reached the plains to the east, the crew was to try for contextual mapping of the ridge and its surroundings), Santa Barbara Coast, California (LTER SITE: This site is located in the coastal zone of southern California near Santa Barbara.  It is bounded by the steep east-west trending Santa Ynez Mountains and coastal plain to the north and the unique Northern Channel Islands to the south. Point Conception, where the coast of California returns to a north to south orientation, lies at the western, and the Santa Clara River the eastern boundary.  Remotely sensed data such as CEO photos supports studies of the effects of land use and ocean forcing on the processing and transport of nutrients and carbon to giant kelp forests as well as the role of climate change/variability and disturbance on nearshore population dynamics, community structure, and ecosystem processes.  Today’s pass approached the coast from the NW in late morning light.  Clear weather offered an opportunity for detailed mapping views along this dramatic coast).

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
07/22/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P undock #1 ~4:22pm EDT
07/23/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P Kurs-NA Test
07/23/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P re-docking ~9:55pm EDT
07/27/12 -- HTV3 docking
07/30/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P undocking #2 ~2:11pm EDT
08/01/12 -- Progress M-16M/48P launch [4-orbit RDVZ] ~3:35pm EDT
08/01/12 -- Progress M-16M/48P launch [34-orbit RDVZ] ~3:38pm EDT
08/01/12 -- Progress M-16M/48P docking [4-orbit RDVZ] ~9:24pm EDT
08/03/12 -- Progress M-16M/48P docking [34-orbit RDVZ] ~6:14pm EDT
08/16/12 -- Russian EVA-31
08/30/12 -- US EVA-18
09/06/12 -- HTV3 undocking
09/08/12 -- HTV3 reentry
09/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/25/12 -- ATV3 undocking
10/15/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O.Novitsky/E.Tarelkin
10/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
11/01/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P launch
11/03/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P docking
11/12/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
12/05/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/07/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
12/26/12 -- Progress M-18M/50P launch
12/28/12 -- Progress M-18M/50P docking
03/19/13 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
04/02/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S launch – P.Vinogradov (CDR-36)/C.Cassidy/A.Misurkin
04/04/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
05/16/13 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S undock/landing (End of Increment 35)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/29/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S launch – M.Suraev (CDR-37)/K.Nyberg/L.Parmitano
05/31/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S undock/landing (End of Increment 36)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S launch – M.Hopkins/TBD (CDR-38)/TBD
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S undock/landing (End of Increment 37)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-11M/37S launch – K.Wakata (CDR-39)/R.Mastracchio/TBD
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-11M/37S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
03/xx/14 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S undock/landing (End of Increment 38)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------