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February 26, 2010
ISS On-Orbit Status 02/26/10

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

At wake-up (1:00am EST), FE-1 Suraev did the regular daily early-morning check of the aerosol filters at the Russian Elektron O2 generator which Maxim had installed on 10/19 in gaps between the BZh Liquid Unit and the oxygen outlet pipe (filter FA-K) plus hydrogen outlet pipe (filter FA-V). [FE-1 again inspects the filters tonight before bedtime, currently a daily requirement per plan, with photographs to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

Also at wake-up, Suraev terminated his 11th experiment session, started last night, for the long-term Russian sleep study MBI-12/SONOKARD, taking the recording device from his SONOKARD sports shirt pocket and later copying the measurements to the RSE-MED laptop for subsequent downlink to the ground. [SONOKARD objectives are stated to (1) study the feasibility of obtaining the maximum of data through computer processing of records obtained overnight, (2) systematically record the crewmember’s physiological functions during sleep, (3) study the feasibility of obtaining real-time crew health data. Investigators believe that contactless acquisition of cardiorespiratory data over the night period could serve as a basis for developing efficient criteria for evaluating and predicting adaptive capability of human body in long-duration space flight.]

CDR Williams, FE-5 Noguchi & FE-6 Creamer completed another Reaction Self Test (Psychomotor Vigilance Self Test on the ISS) protocol. [The RST is performed twice daily (after wakeup & before bedtime) for 3 days prior to the sleep shift, the day(s) of the sleep shift and 5 days following a sleep shift. A total of 121 RST runs are assigned to Jeff for the duration of his orbital stay.]

FE-4 Kotov unloaded the Russian KARDIOMED (Cardiomed) hardware from Progress M-04M/36P and installed it in the SM (Service Module) for upcoming experiment sessions, a task requiring several hours. [The equipment includes the KARDIOMED-TsB, KARDIOMED-KP, KARDIOMED-PMO and KARDIOMED-KRM assemblies, a HOLTER monitor harness, a PLETISMOGRAF (Plethysmograph) instrument and a DOPPLER complex. A Plethysmograph (sometimes called a “body box”) is an instrument for measuring changes in volume within an organ or the whole body (usually resulting from fluctuations in the amount of blood or air it contains).]

Afterwards, Kotov worked on the BTKh-39 ASEPTIC payload in the MRM2 module, removing processed samples from the TBU thermostatic container and preparing them for return to Earth on Soyuz TMA-16/20S on 3/18. The TBU was then deactivated, uninstalled and stowed in the FGB.

CDR Williams set up the PPFS (Portable Pulmonary Function System) including MBS (Mixing Bag System) and then performed his final VO2Max session, integrated with Thermolab, with ground specialists standing by for support as required. Afterwards, he tore down and stowed the hardware, to be used next by Tracy Caldwell. [VO2Max uses the PPFS, CEVIS cycle, PFS gas cylinders and mixing bag system, plus multiple other pieces of hardware to measure oxygen uptake, cardiac output, and more, such as the battery-powered (2 AA) Thermolab to record heat produced. The exercise protocol comprises 5-min stages at workloads eliciting 25%, 50% & 75% of aerobic capacity as measured pre-flight, followed by a 250-watt increase in workload every minute until the crewmember reaches maximum exercise capacity. At that point, CEVIS workload increase is stopped, and a 5-min cooldown period follows at the 25% load. Constraints are: no food 2 hrs prior to exercise start, no caffeine 8 hrs prior to exercise, and must be well hydrated.]

Jeff also terminated his second session with the JAXA experiment “Biological Rhythms” after completing the 24-hr. run, doffing the electrodes of the DWH (Digital Walk Holter) for ECG (Electrocardiogram) recording, then saving the Holter ECG data on the MLT (MMA {Microgravity Measurement Apparatus} Laptop Terminal).

Williams & Creamer worked jointly to remove the completed ABRS (Advanced Biological Research System) hardware assembly from the structural shell, then spent several hours refurbishing the ABRS internal cooling loop hours. The ABRS assembly was subsequently re-installed in the structural shell.

Performing regular service on the science payload APEX-Cambium (Advanced Plant Experiments on Orbit-Cambium), Creamer harvested Run 3A plants of the TAGES (Transgenic Arabidopsis Gene Expression System) experiment. [When completed, the APEX-Cambium payload will help in resolving two scientific questions: First, the CSA-sponsored Cambium experiment will determine the role of gravity in Cambium wood cell development (providing the pulp & paper and construction industries insight into the fundamental mechanisms of wood cell formation), and secondly, the NASA-sponsored TAGES (Transgenic Arabidopsis Gene Expression System) will demonstrate non-destructive reporter gene technology & investigate spaceflight plant stress. APEX-Cambium provides NASA & the International ISS community a permanent controlled environment capability to support growth of various organisms (i.e. whole plants).]

Afterwards, TJ set up the MWA (Maintenance Work Area) work surface prior to the start of the upcoming Tropi2 experiment runs.

The CDR meanwhile supported the ground in swapping the Lab THC CCAA (Temperature & Humidity Control / Common Cabin Air Assembly) air conditioner from Port to Starboard by closing off the LAB1P6 MFCV (Manual Flow Control Valve) and opening the LAB1S6 MFCV. This allowed the swapover from the CCAA port channel (P6) to the alternate system on the starboard (S6) of the Lab. The ITCS (Internal Thermal Control System) LTL was then switched accordingly, i.e., from port to starboard. [The CCAA is a network of ducting that draws in the air through filters, delivers it for conditioning, and returns it to the modules. The swap-over between the CCAA channels is generally done by the ground once a month, with crew support, to dry out the heat exchanger of the deactivated side. MCC-H flight controllers command the required systems configurations for the dryout via S-band.]

Working in the SM on the ASN-M satellite navigation system, FE-1 Suraev first relocated the NPM-2 navigation receiver module behind panel 388, securing it on structural elements with Aramid tape, then unstowed two new navigation receiver modules, NPM-3 & NPM-4 from Progress 36P, attached them on structural elements behind panel 388 and connected both of them to NPM-1 & NPM-2. [The ASN-M satellite navigation system, Russia’s equivalent of the U.S. GPS, was required for the arrival of the European ATV (Automated Transfer Vehicle) “Jules Verne”. The old navigation electronics modules NPM-3 & NPM-4 had been removed from behind panel 388 on 3/30/09.]

Suraev also completed the periodic transfer of U.S. condensate water from CWCs (Contingency Water Containers) to the RS (Russian Segment) for the periodic (about twice a month) replenishing of the Elektron’s water supply for electrolysis into oxygen & (waste) hydrogen, filling the designated KOV EDV container from CWCs #1083 & #1065. When filled, the EDV was connected to the BPK transfer pump for processing through the BKO water purification (multifiltration) unit. [The 40-minute procedure is specially designed to prevent air bubbles larger than ~10 mm from getting into the BZh Liquid Unit where they could cause Elektron shutdown. If bubbles are detected in the EDV, they are separated (by centrifugation) into another EDV. BKO contains five purification columns to rid the condensate of dissolved mineral and organic impurities. It has a service lifetime of ~450 liters throughput. The water needs to be purified for proper electrolysis in the Elektron O2 generator.]

After updating the Russian RS1 laptop with new MRM2 TSU1(2) firmware, Maxim used the KTsP1 (Central Post Computer 1) laptop to make the proper parameter settings for the firmware.

Continuing the commissioning of the new BRI Smart Switch Router computer in the SM (installed on 2/11), Maxim today loaded new software (Vers. 2.1) for the BRI onto the Russian RSS2 laptop (which takes the place of the failed RSS1).

FE-5 Noguchi took photographs of the ARED advanced resistive exerciser and completed several tests to clear up some questions remaining after ground review of the videos from yesterday’s ARED ACO (Activation & Checkout) sessions.

Afterwards, Noguchi activated the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox) and performed further troubleshooting on the SODI/DSC (Selectable Optical Diagnostics Instrument / Diffusion Soret Coefficient) hardware, assessing connector pin integrity and taking photos of all connectors, hardware, and the MSG facility rack including MLC (MSG Laptop Computer). [DSC is part of the SODI triple experiment series of SODI (IVIDIL, DSC, Colloid) for advanced research in vibration effects on diffusion in liquids, diffusion measurements in petroleum reservoirs and the study on growth and properties of advanced photonic materials within colloidal solutions, respectively.]

Later, the FE-5 undertook another periodic relocation of the TEPC (Tissue Equivalent Proportional Counter) detector assembly, the primary radiation measurement tool in the ISS, moving it from the Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module, F2/FD2) to Node-2 (P5). [The UOP (Utility Outlet Panel) 3, port J3, is being used as power plug-in.]

In Node-1, Noguchi completed the periodic inspection and cleaning of the starboard aft IMV (Inter-module Ventilation) fan inlet.

Then, moving on to the US A/L, Soichi terminated regeneration on METOX (Metal Oxide) canisters #0013 & #0011 in the ”bake-out” oven.

In Soyuz 20S, docked at the MRM2 module, Suraev took pictures of the spacecraft’s “Blister” window for a visual assessment of external contamination (type, color, area, thickness) of the window, when sunlight illumination was suitable.

In the SM, the FE-1 did the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS). [Regular daily SOZh maintenance consists, among else, of checking the ASU toilet facilities, replacement of the KTO & KBO solid waste containers and replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers.]

Maxim also completed the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance, updating/editing its standard “delta file” including stowage locations, for the regular weekly automated export/import to its three databases on the ground (Houston, Moscow, Baikonur).

Soichi worked on the WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment) toilet, replacing its T-hose and urine valve/tank hose with new hoses.

The Japanese Flight Engineer also performed the periodic inspection & cleaning of the FDS (Fire Detection & Suppression) bacteria filter and CD (Smoke Detector) in the A/L, Node-1 & Node-2.

Oleg conducted the regular weekly maintenance on the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation & Stabilization), primarily inspecting the condition of the SLDs (Subject Loading Devices) in contingency configuration, SLD cables for fraying and SPDs (Subject Positioning Devices), lubricating as required, plus recording time & date values.

Soichi completed the periodic inspection of the CEVIS (Cycle Ergometer with Vibration Isolation & Stabilization), particularly its four isolators for their condition. [No frayed or severed wire cables were found.]

It was Jeff’s turn tonight to undergo the PanOptic eye test which requires application of eye drops (Tropicamide [Mydriacyl]) causing eye dilation for subsequent ophthalmic examination performed by Noguchi as CMO (Crew Medical Officer) with an ophthalmoscope. [The procedure, guided by special software on the T61p RoBOT laptop (#1026), captures still & video images of the eye, including the posterior poles, macula & optic disc with the optic nerve, for downlink and expert analysis.]

At ~3:15am EST, the crew held the regular (nominally weekly) tagup with the Russian Flight Control Team (GOGU), including Shift Flight Director (SRP), at TsUP via S-band/audio, phone-patched from Houston and Moscow.

At ~5:00am, Maxim linked up with TsUP/Moscow stowage specialists via S-band to conduct the weekly IMS tagup, discussing inventory & stowage issues, equipment locations and cargo transfers.

At ~9:00am, all crewmembers convened for their standard bi-weekly teleconference with the JSC Astronaut Office (Steve Lindsey), via S-band S/G-2 audio & phone patch.

At ~2:20pm, the ISS crew had their regular weekly tagup with the Lead Flight Director at JSC/MCC-H via S-band/audio. [S/G-2 (Space-to-Ground 2) phone patch via SSC (Station Support Computer).]

The crewmembers worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise on the CEVIS cycle ergometer (CDR), TVIS treadmill (FE-1/2x), ARED advanced resistive device (CDR, FE-5, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (FE-5, FE-6) and VELO bike ergometer with bungee cord load trainer (FE-4).

WRM Update: A new WRM (Water Recovery Management) “cue card” was uplinked to the crew for their reference, updated with their latest CWC (Contingency Water Container) water audit. [The updated card (22-0003N) lists 96 CWCs (2,412.3 L total) for the five types of water now identified on board: 1. technical water (20 CWCs with 781.3 L, for Elektron electrolysis, incl. 87.5 L in 4 bags containing Wautersia bacteria, 134.2 L in 3 clean bags for contingency use, 559.6 L in 13 bags still requiring sample analysis, 2. potable water (9 CWCs with 366.7 L, of which 1 bag with 23.0 L contains Wautersia, 1 bag with 43.6 L requires sample analysis & 129.3 L in 3 bags are good for contingency use, 3. iodinated water (59 CWCs with 1110.5 L), 4. condensate water (1 bag with 28.1 L [known leaker], 1 empty CWC, 4 bags with 101.4 L) and 5. waste/EMU dump and other (2 CWCs with 24.3 L). Wautersia bacteria are typical water-borne microorganisms that have been seen previously in ISS water sources. These isolates pose no threat to human health.]

C&C MDM Transitions Update:
  • The recovery of the Columbus DMS (Data Management System) from the malfunctions observed on 2/18 was concluded on 2/20 with a fully functional subsystem, but redundancy was lost on the MMUs (Mass Memory Units) and the HRM (High Rate Multiplexer).
  • As part of cleanup steps, on 2/21 a telemetry packet was started which was intended to run on board from the Columbus DMS VTC (Vital Telemetry Telecommand Computer) to the C&C MDM (Command & Control Multiplexer/Demultiplexer computer).
  • An incorrect parameter with this command brought the VTC telemetry packet unintentionally in the S-Band downlink memory of the C&C MDM, corrupting it and causing the MDMs (prime & backup) to transition as was seen.
  • To fix the problem the C&C MDMs software is planned to be patched next week and operational check mechanisms will be implemented on Col-CC (Columbus Control Center/Oberpfaffenhofen) side.
  • Until then the S-Band downlink for Columbus is blocked as a precaution. However the Col-CC has full insight into the Columbus status through Ku-Band data.
  • Also all Columbus anomaly handling functionality is available, active and in no way compromised.

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today were Chiloe Island, Southern Chile (HMS Beagle Site: Darwin and the Beagle arrived at this island on June 12, 1834, but after gathering provisions and surveying the west coast, departed the following day. Darwin hated the place because it never stopped raining! Looking for this large, rugged and forested island as ISS approached the southern coast of Chile from the NW), SW Glaciers of S. Patagonian Glacier Field (for this particular target site researchers are interested in the smaller glaciers as we have numerous images of the larger ones. Documenting the individual glacier origin of the smaller glaciers to the terminus. It was probably cloudy to the south, so the crew was advised to concentrate on those glaciers to the left of track), N. Glaciers of S. Patagonian Glacier Field (ISS had an orbit pass over the northern glaciers of the Southern Patagonian Ice Field. Image frames of the glaciers and fjords were requested to track changes in ice extent), and Santiago, Chile (about 5.5 million people live in Santiago, fully 36% of Chile's population. Looking left of track, inland of the coast ~80 km. The gray mass of the cityscape stands out against the surrounding farmland).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 7:49am EST [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 349.0 km
Apogee height – 353.8 km
Perigee height – 344.3 km
Period -- 91.52 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.65 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0007099
Solar Beta Angle -- 41.9 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.73
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 85 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 64,604

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
03/14/10 -- Daylight Saving Time begins (EDT)
03/18/10 -- Soyuz TMA-16/20S undock/landing (M. Suraev/J. Williams)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
04/02/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S launch – Skvortsov (CDR-24)/Caldwell/Kornienko – 12:04:34am EDT
04/04/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S docking – ~1:28am
04/05/10 -- STS-131/Discovery/19A – MPLM(P), LMC
--------------Six-crew operations-----------------
04/27/10 -- Progress M-03M/35P undock
04/28/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P launch
04/30/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P docking
05/14/10 -- STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM-1 “Rassvet”
05/10/10 -- Progress M-04M/36P undock
05/31/10 -- Soyuz TMA-17/21S undock/landing
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
06/14/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S launch – Wheelock (CDR-25)/Walker/Yurchikhin
06/16/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-----------------
07/xx/10 -- US EVA-15
07/xx/10 -- Russian EVA-25
06/28/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P launch
07/02/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P docking
07/26/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P undock
07/27/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P launch
07/29/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P docking
07/29/10 -- STS-134/Endeavour (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS-02)
08/30/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P undock
08/31/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P launch
09/02/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P docking
09/15/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S undock/landing
09/16/10 -- STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM)
09/18/10 -- STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) docking
09/22/10 -- STS-133/Discovery (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) undock
09/30/10 -- Soyuz TMA-20/24S launch – Kelly (CDR-26)/Kaleri/Skripochka
10/xx/10 -- Russian EVA-26
10/26/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P undock
10/27/10 -- Progress M-09M/41P launch
10/29/10 -- Progress M-09M/41P docking
11/15/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing
11/30/10 -- Soyuz TMA-21/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
12/15/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P undock
02/08/11 -- Progress M-09M/41P undock
02/09/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P launch
02/11/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P docking
03/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/26S launch – A. Borisienko (CDR-28)/R, Garan/A.Samokutayev
xx/xx/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P launch
05/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-23/27S launch – M. Fossum (CDR-29)/S. Furukawa/S. Volkov
12/??/11 -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton.