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ISS Update: Astronaut Mike Fossum – 07.11.2012
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ISS Update: Interviews (July 9-13, 2012)
In the International Space Station flight control room at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, Houston, ISS Update commentator Dan Huot interviewed Mike Fossum, NASA astronaut and Expedition 29 commander. Fossum talked about the upcoming launch of the three newest station residents, Expedition 32 Flight Engineers Suni Williams, Aki Hoshide and Yuri Malenchenko.
Williams, Hoshide and Malenchenko are scheduled to launch to the station aboard their Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft on July 14 and dock July 17 to begin a four-month tour of duty aboard the orbiting complex.
Fossum talked about the training and preparations required to get the incoming crew members ready for their launch and stay aboard the station. He also talked about some of the traditions and activities the crew members participate in leading up to their launch.
Fossum also explained in detail his launch experience aboard a Soyuz spacecraft and what the newest station crew members can expect during their launch.
ISS Update: Attitude Determination and Control Officer – 07.10.2012
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In the International Space Station flight control room at NASA’s Johnson Space Center, Houston, ISS Update commentator Dan Huot interviewed Ann Esbeck, Attitude Determination and Control Officer (ADCO) flight controller. Esbeck talked about the ADCO’s role in the Mission Control Center.
The ADCO essentially serves as the station’s pilot. Esbeck said the controller sends computer commands that ensure the orbital complex maintains the proper orientation.
This role is important for visiting vehicles like the upcoming Soyuz TMA-05M that will carry Expedition 32 Flight Engineers Suni Williams, Aki Hoshide, and Yuri Malenchenko to the station. The complex must move perpendicular to its normal orientation so that the appropriate docking port is available to the arriving ship. “By pitching the vehicle up,” Esbeck said, “they can come in along the velocity vector and dock nice and easy with the sun pointing right where it needs to so they can see it.”
While the Soyuz will be docking to the bottom of the station, other vehicles dock to different sides of the complex. According to Esbeck, this requires different types of maneuvers. “There are also others where we’ll actually turn around 180 degrees the day before and then pitch up the day of docking, and that’s so that we can dock to the zenith port,” she said.