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07-28-2012
July 28, 2012
ISS On-Orbit Status 07/28/12

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below.    

For today and tomorrow, the crew has again been split in two shifts, in order to provide support to the Progress M-15M/47P redocking activity:

Crew 1 (Padalka, Revin, Malenchenko):
  • Wake1 – 2:00am EDT (this morning)
  • Sleep1 – 11:15am (today)
  • Wake2 – 4:15pm (today)
  • Sleep2 – 10:30pm (today)
  • Wake3 – 7:30am (tomorrow)
  • Sleep3 – 8:40pm (tomorrow)
  • Wake4 – 2:00am (Monday) – returning to nominal.

Crew 2 (Acaba, Williams, Hoshide):
  • Wake1 – 2:00am EDT (this morning)
  • Sleep1 – 5:30pm (today)
  • Wake2 – 7:45pm (today)
  • Observe 47P Re-dock – 7:45pm-9:15pm (today)
  • Sleep2 – 9:15pm (today)
  • Wake3 – 3:30am (tomorrow)
  • Sleep3 – 5:30pm (tomorrow)
  • Wake4 – 2:00am (Monday) – returning to nominal.

At wakeup, Gennady Padalka performed the routine inspection of the SM (Service Module) PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection. FE-2 also conducted the weekly checkup behind ASU/toilet panel 139 in the SM of a fluid connector (MNR-NS) of the SM-U urine collection system, looking for potential moisture.

In preparation for the re-docking of Progress M-15M/47P (#415) at the DC1 port after more ground-controlled tests of its new Kurs-NA antenna (tonight at ~9:00pm EDT), Malenchenko & Padalka worked through the standard 3h15m OBT (Onboard Training) drill for the TORU teleoperator system, which provides a manual backup mode to the Progress’ KURS automated rendezvous radar system.    [TORU will not be used any earlier than 400m from the ISS.] 

After the successful capture & berthing of JAXA’s HTV3 (H-IIB Transfer Vehicle 2) “Kounotori 3“ (Stork 3) yesterday at 8:23am EDT, the HTV3 was successfully transitioned from internal batteries to ISS power to prevent further drain on its non-rechargeable batteries. 

FE-6 Hoshide & FE-5 Williams performed the vestibule outfitting, including removal of the CDC (Center Disk Cover), mating of a power jumper and a MIL-STD-1553 data jumper from Node-2 to HTV, etc. 

HTV3 hatch was opened today at ~4:05am.  Suni Williams, Aki Hoshide & Joe Acaba ingressed the HTV at ~4:15am.  FE-2 Revin sampled the air in the HTV using a Russian AK-1M absorber.    [The crew used gray tape to secure the Node-2 nadir/HTV Radial Port Closeout in place to avoid interference with the HTV hatch alignment guides.]

FE-6 Hoshide started another sampling run with the AQM (Air Quality Monitor), deactivating the system ~5 hrs later. [Consisting of the EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health Systems Gas Chromatograph / Differential Mobility Spectrometer), the system is controlled with “Sionex” expert software from the SSC (Station Support Computer)-12 laptop. The AQM demonstrates COTS (Commercial Off-the-Shelf) technology for identifying volatile organic compounds, similar to the VOA (Volatile Organics Analyzer). 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.]

During his first work period (2:00am-11:15am), Sergei Revin completed 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.]

During their workhours (2:00am-5:30pm), FE-5 Williams deactivated the amateur/ham radio stations in the SM and COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) to prevent RF interference during Progress re-docking, and FE-6 Hoshide closed the shutters of the Lab, Node-3/Cupola and JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) windows as protection against thruster effluent contamination.

Joe, Suni & Aki began with the transfer of cargo items delivered on HTV3.    [Between the three of them, they spent ~12 hrs above the scheduled time today on HTV Cargo Ops.]

With Joe taking documentary photography, Suni unstowed the critical new YTSL (YouTube SpaceLab) payload with its live occupants from HTV3 and installed its Spider Habitats 1 & 2, with running commentary.      [Both spider habitats were installed in CGBA-4 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 4), followed by feeding of the spiders, with video & still photographs being taken.  Recorded HD video is required during entire activity, to be downlinked when resources are available.]

Williams & Hoshide had their weekly PFCs (Private Family Conferences) scheduled, via S-and/audio and Ku-band/MS-NetMeeting application (which displays the uplinked ground video on an SSC laptop), Aki at ~11:25am, Suni at ~3:55pm EDT.

The crew worked out on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-3), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (CDR), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (FE-2, FE-3, FE-5, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (FE-5, FE-6), and VELO ergometer bike with load trainer (FE-4).

Progress 47P Redocking: All activities are on schedule for the 47P redocking for 9:00 pm EDT tonight.  The Russian crewmembers are standing by for taking over with TORU if necessary.  Joe, Suni & Aki are also awake to observe the automated docking.  Kurs activation was at 7:00 pm EDT.  At ~7:54 EDT, there is an important check of the Kurs system at ~45 km out.      [Main cause for the Kurs anomalies during the first re-docking attempt was the thermal environment impact on the Kurs-NA system.  If the Kurs-NA equipment is warm enough then it behaves nominally.  This was verified by ground testing.  The Russians also successfully activated Kurs-NA on orbit the other day after letting the equipment warm up first.  Other than temperature, the configuration of the Kurs-NA equipment for re-docking will be exactly the same as the first attempt.]

Weekly Science Update (Expedition Thirty-Two – Week 4).

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 GMT201, one of the Silicon Detector Units (SDU #1) went off.  “Thank you, Aki, for recovering on GMT202!”  However on GMT203-204, SDU#2 went off, this is the reference detector without shielding tiles.  Since this removes the comparison reference for the detectors with shielding tiles, this has science impact.  Recovery activity is in work.  To date, around 42 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): No report.

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): We ran four tests this week at different air and GN2 flows.  The first test was a high flow rate test.  The flame did not blow off, but instead became a sooty, comet-shaped flame that surrounded the sphere.   Gaseous nitrogen blew out the stagnation region but not the wake region.   Lower flow rate tests were also performed with incrementally increasing nitrogen suppressant, and we determined the nitrogen flow rate where the stagnation region blew off.  In one of these lower flow rate tests, we blew off the entire flame with nitrogen, but for a duplicate test with a longer burn time (more preheating) the nitrogen was not able to blow off the flame at the same 5 cm/s air flow.  This demonstrates that fuel preheating increases the difficulty to suppress the flame.  Unfortunately, we broke another igniter wire.   We have two left, one standard length and one long, each with a coil igniter geometry.  We are replanning the test priority and test matrix order given the limited number of remaining igniters.  We have manifested more igniters on the first SpaceX launch which should enable us to complete our test matrix.  The most recent flow calibration performed this week indicated increased resistance, so we will perform soot removal next week.  Recent images show the effect of nitrogen application on a flame burning a 2-cm acrylic sphere in the wake configuration.  The flame is established for a few seconds, and then nitrogen is applied at the maximum flow rate of 500 cc/min.  The nitrogen weakens the flame substantially and nearly extinguished it, but it is then able to recover, even with the nitrogen flowing.  When the nitrogen is shut off, the flame intensifies.  Finally, turning the air flow off extinguishes the flame.

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.

CIRCADIAN RHYTHMS (ESA):    “Dear Aki, you will be performing your first CIRCADIAN RHYTHMS measurement session next week.”

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): No activity for this week. DECLIC is off until GMT 247.  Scientists are developing the work program of the next sequence (ALI-SC8).

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): No report.

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 6101 images to-date.  The most recent HICO images include Newfoundland, the Red Sea, Washington, DC, and parts of Maine.   RAIDS is continuing to collect secondary science data including nighttime atmospheric disk photometry, spectra and temperatures.  Extreme ultraviolet 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): "Joe and Suni: Congratulations from the ICV team on conducting the first complete simultaneous echo/exercise protocol in space!!!  You made the first performance of our new implementation plan look effortless and our remote PI in Dallas was immensely pleased with the image quality for both of your scans.  The entire team appreciates all the good work!   Suni and Aki: After completion of Wednesday's download, we were able to quickly verify that we have the expected number of files for Suni's Holter and Actiwatches as well as the expected total file size for the Cardiopres data collected by both of you!  We're glad that Makita battery life seemed to improve with continued use.  Thank you so much for your efforts - your attention to detail makes our job so easy."

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: “Thanks, Suni, for making the first two successful Expedition 32 ISS Ham Passes!   On GMT 205, you answered 19 of 22 student questions during your contact with the Women in Engineering @ Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, New York.  This contact was not only the first Expedition 32 ISS Ham contact, but it was the first time that Rochester Institute of Technology had connected to the ISS for educational programming!  Then, on GMT 208, you made another successful contact with the Virginia Air and Space Center, Hampton Roads, Virginia!  All 15 student questions were answered with enough time left over for some students to ask another question!  Ken Ransom was at the POIWG in Huntsville, Alabama, where he, along with ten Payload Support personnel, monitored your contact!  An amateur radio operator in Havana, Cuba, also heard you talking with the students and reported it to the AMSAT Bulletin Board!  Way to go, Suni!”

ISSAC (ISS Agricultural Camera, NASA): ISSAC Operations are nominal and on-going. Last week, ISSAC collected 43 strip targets, equivalent of 1900 images. With the dock of HTV3 on Node-2 nadir port, plans are in place to open the shutter for a short duration during the daylight passes at crew discretion and availability.

IV Gen (Intravenous Fluids Generation): No report.

JOURNALS (Behavioral Issues Associated with Isolation and Confinement, NASA): No report. [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): On GMT 201, very small amount of oil leak, less than 0.2 cc, was found before complete retrieval of the liquid bridge. On GMT 202 - 204, ground team decided to continue the experiment with regular-sized liquid bridge instead of long liquid bridge and controlled the bridge with extra care. As a result, leak did not re-occur, but lots of unexpected bubbles were found in the liquid bridge. Therefore most of the time was spent removing those bubbles. On GMT 207, the final Marangoni experiment in this increment was performed.  A liquid bridge was formed, 50 mm in diameter and 50 mm long, and turbulent flow was observed.

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 performing nominal commanding that produced IV curves of the solar cells.  IV curves are plots of the current versus voltage for solar cells and tell a lot about how these are performing.  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): “Aki, thank you very much for the functional checkout of Onboard Diagnostic Kit. All of the functions were confirmed to be fine. “

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: “Joe, you have successfully completed 3 of the 4 sessions planned for Nutrition/Repository/Pro K. Your barcodes and Pro K data have been received on the ground. There is only one controlled diet session remaining which will be scheduled within two weeks of return.  Aki, you have completed 1 of 3 controlled diet sessions for Pro K. The barcode data from your crew notes has been received and will be very helpful during sample return inventories. Your next Nutrition/Repository/Pro K session will include a 4 day monitored diet.

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 participating in Reaction Self Test, your efforts are greatly appreciated!”

Reversible Figures (ESA): “Thank you Suni for completing the very first REVERSIBLE FIGURES science session on-orbit. Much appreciated! Great start of a new experiment!” [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): No report. [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): Sun Visibility Window #55 was on-going and ended on GMT207. SOLSPEC calibration runs and science measurements were successfully performed. SOLACES was in heated mode over the past week. Next Sun Visibility Window #56 expected to start on GMT230. 

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): No report.

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: “Suni, wonderful job on your first Sprint leg ultrasound! The scanning technique is difficult but you caught on quickly. The PI has received the images and will be reviewing them soon. Your next scan is in approximately 15 days.”

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 47P undocking and the attempted re-docking events earlier this week.  Canary plans to collect data during the HTV-3 berthing on Day 209 and the second attempt to re-dock 47P on Day 211.  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): “Dear Aki, you will be doing you first VESSEL IMAGING session next week per the current plan.  Thank you, Suni, for your first scan session for VESSEL IMAGING. The science team confirmed good images.  [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): “Thank you Suni for performing the touch activity this past Monday.”

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 7/21 the ground has received 1,085 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:  Coast Mountains, BC, Canada - 1 frame - target not acquired; and Clearwater Lakes, Quebec, Canada - 4 frames - target not acquired. Thanks you for your efforts to acquire our targets.  We hope to be publishing some of your photography in the near future.  If there is anything we can do to help you acquire photos of our target areas, please don't hesitate to contact us.”

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
07/28/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P re-docking ~9:00pm EDT
07/30/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P undocking #2 ~5:16pm EDT
07/31/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P undocking backup, ~4:26pm 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-------------