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April 07, 2010
ISS On-Orbit Status 04/07/10

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. FD3 (Flight Day 3) of STS-131/19A. Crew sleep cycle shifting – see below.

STS-131/Discovery docked smoothly at the ISS PMA-2 (Pressurized Mating Adapter-2) port on time at ~3:44am EDT this morning, with all hooks closed by 3:59am, rigidizing the Shuttle-ISS linkup. After successful completion of the RPM (R-Bar Pitch Maneuver) at 2:57am, Discovery had arrived at +V-Bar (310 ft straight in front of ISS) a few minutes later. The station now hosts thirteen occupants, with four women, as Mission 19A is underway. [The combined crew is comprised of ISS-CDR Oleg Kotov (Russia), FE-1 Alexander Skvortsov (Russia), FE-2 Tracy Caldwell-Dyson (USA), FE-3 Mikhail Kornienko (Russia), FE-5 Soichi Noguchi (Japan), FE-6 Timothy Creamer (USA), STS-CDR Alan Poindexter, PLT Jim Dutton, MS1 Rick Mastracchio, MS2 Dottie “ML” Metcalf-Lindenburger, MS3 Stephanie Wilson, FE-4 Naoko Yamazaki (Japan),and MS5 Clay Anderson.]

After the docking, the station was reoriented as planned to minimize the risk of micrometeoroid/debris impacts upon the Shuttle, with the Discovery’s belly turned opposite to the flight direction (-XVV = -x-axis in velocity vector, +z-axis in local vertical). [Earlier, at 1:35am, the ISS maneuvered to docking attitude after attitude control authority was handed over from USOS (US Segment) to RS MCS (Russian Segment Motion Control System) at ~1:30am. Control returned from Shuttle ORB to US Momentum Management at 5:15am.]

Before the docking, CDR Kotov performed final STTS communications configuration checks for the docking. Upon docking, Oleg switched USOS/RS comm systems to their mated-flight mode.

Other pre-docking preparations by the ISS crew included:
  • CDR Kotov activating the Russian TEKh-15/DAKON-M IZGIB (“Bend”) experiment hardware in the SM (Service Module) for taking structural dynamics data during the Discovery docking activities, later downlinking the dynamics measurements to the ground and closing out the data take;
  • FE-2 Caldwell-Dyson & FE-5 Noguchi closing the external shutters of the Lab, JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) & Cupola windows as protection against Shuttle thruster plume contamination;
  • FE-6 Creamer & Kotov readying their RPM photo equipment, including camera battery checks, for Orbiter TPS (Thermal Protection System) documentation,
  • Caldwell-Dyson & Creamer checking the proper hook-up of the UOP DCP (Utility Outlet Panel/Display & Control Panel) power bypass cable at the CUP RWS (Cupola Robotic Work Station) for video coverage of the Shuttle’s approach & docking with the SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System) cameras,
  • Tracy & TJ also preparing the photo/video equipment for documenting approach & docking activities, then
  • Powering up the PCS (Portable Computer System) CUP RWS & Airlock A31p laptops and swapping out tapes in the VDS VTR (Video Distribution Subsystem/Video Tape Recorder);
  • FE-5 Noguchi configuring & later activating the camera timers upon Orbiter RPM initiation and handling the camcorder (the timers indicate beginning & end of the bottom-side photography window), plus
  • Configuring proper headset connection for supporting the RPM activity (which resulted in several hundred pictures of the Orbiter bottom TPS).

During the RPM photo session (2:41am-2:56am), Oleg wielded the 400mm-lens D2X camera, Timothy the 800mm-lens D2X for documenting the tile acreage & bottom-side door seals). [The RPM was used by the crew for the bottom-side mapping of the Orbiter at the arrival of the Shuttle. During the RPM at ~600 ft from the station, the two “shooters”, had only ~90 seconds (out of the total 9 min of imaging) for taking high-resolution digital photographs of all tile areas and door seals on Discovery, which TJ prepared for downlinking after completion of the “shoot” at ~3:20am via OCA from a hard-wired (not wireless) SSC (Station Support Computer) for launch damage assessment. Thus, time available for the shooting was very limited, requiring great coordination between the two headset-equipped photographers and the Shuttle pilot.]

Shortly before the docking, Noguchi, Creamer & Caldwell-Dyson configured the Russian MCS (Motion Control System) for the automatic “PMA-2 Arrival” mode, an operational sequence used to monitor Orbiter arrival at the PMA-2. [At “Capture Confirmed”, ISS attitude was immediately set to free drift for about 30 min. to allow dampening out relative motions of ISS and Endeavour (with the ODS (Orbiter Docking System) dampers/shock absorbers) plus re-align the docking ring, then maneuvered to “Mated TEA” (Torque Equilibrium Attitude) at ~4:11am to account for the new overall configuration with Discovery docked, which regained attitude control until handover to ISS momentum management.]

After leak checks of the ODS vestibule for about an hour, ISS/STS hatches were opened at 5:11am.

After hatch opening, before installation of the ventilation airduct between station and Discovery, Kotov performed the standard collection of air samples with the Russian AK-1M sampler in the Orbiter.

After the traditional welcome ceremony (~5:45am), the new arrivals received the mandatory 30-min Safety briefing by CDR Kotov

For Soichi Noguchi, the next urgent task was to transfer the Ultrabay HDD (hard disk drive) with the stored footage of the Orbiter TPS inspection from the Shuttle PGCS computer network to the ISS and install it in a hard-wired SSC for high-priority downlink to MCC-Houston. [As a clever workaround after the failure of the Ku-band system on the Shuttle, the tile inspection video was digitized/converted to .avi files (~40 GB total), to be downlinked via ISS OCA. A plan has been worked out to get an OCA 60 Mbps downlink rate for a 12-hour period, with 30 Mbps after that if needed.]

As part of post-docking activities, TJ Creamer –
  • Configured the C&T (Command & Tracking) video set-up in Node-2, installing the video cap which enables pass-through reception of video from the Discovery with the Orbiter docked in support of SSRMS (Space Station Remote Manipulator System ops, and
  • Activated the SSCR (Station-to-Shuttle Communications Router) on the ISS LAN (Local Area Network) by powering on its laptop (#1023) in Node-2, verifying activation from LEDs (Light-Emitting Diodes, since screen backlight is failed). [A wireless laptop in the Orbiter can now communicate with the ISS LAN.], and
  • Deployed & updated new 19A SODF (Station Operations Data Files) with emergency procedures, including books, new pages, videos and cue cards, in the various station compartments.

At wake-up (7:36 pm last night), CDR Kotov performed the regular daily early-morning check of the aerosol filters at the Russian Elektron O2 generator which Maxim Suraev 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). [CDR again inspected the filters before bedtime this morning (with Skvortsov for handover/familiarization), currently a daily requirement per plan, with photographs to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

Also at wake-up, Kotov terminated his 6th 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.]

Working with FE-1 Alex Skvortsov as part of the handover program, the CDR conducted the periodic maintenance of the active Russian BMP Harmful Impurities Removal System, starting the "bake-out" cycle to vacuum on absorbent bed #2 of the regenerable dual-channel filtration system. The process will be terminated at ~2:51pm EDT before sleep time. Bed #1 regeneration was performed yesterday. [Regeneration of each of the two cartridges takes about 12 hours and is conducted only during crew awake periods. The BMP’s regeneration cycle is normally done every 20 days. (Last time done: 3/15-3/16/10).]

FE-5 Noguchi & FE-6 Creamer completed another session with the 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. The experiment consists of a 5-minute reaction time task that allows crewmembers to monitor the daily effects of fatigue on performance while on ISS. The experiment provides objective feedback on neurobehavioral changes in attention, psychomotor speed, state stability, and impulsivity while on ISS missions, particularly as they relate to changes in circadian rhythms, sleep restrictions, and extended work shifts.]

Skvortsov & Kornienko went through a joint study session to familiarize themselves with using onboard laptops, network clients and OpsLAN Ethernet outlets, guided by an uplinked reference list. This included performing an HDD health check on the RSK2 laptop and turning off, then booting up the RSK1.

Afterwards, Skvortsov conducted an audit/inventory of computer/network equipment in a CTB (Cargo Transfer Bag), involving an IBM 760XD laptop, Laptop 3, CD-ROM drive, 3COM network & INTEL PRO cards, PCMCIA memory cards, NiMH (Nickel Metal Hydride) batteries, cables, etc.

Joined by Kotov for handover, Alexander later completed a periodic checkout & performance verification of IP-1 airflow sensors in the various RS hatchways. [Inspected IP-1s are in the passageways PrK (SM Transfer Tunnel)–RO (SM Working Compartment), PkhO (SM Transfer Compartment)–RO, PkhO–DC1, PkhO–FGB PGO, PkhO-MRM2, FGB PGO–FGB GA, and FGB GA–Node-1.]

CDR Kotov also stood by when Mikhail Kornienko did the routine daily servicing of the SOZh system (Environment Control & Life Support System, ECLSS) in the SM, and when Skvortsov performed 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).

FE-3 Kornienko conducted his first data collection for the psychological MBI-16 Vzaimodejstvie (“Interactions”) program, accessing and completing the computerized study questionnaire on the RSE-Med laptop and saving the data in an encrypted file. [The software has a “mood” questionnaire, a “group & work environment” questionnaire, and a “critical incidents” log. Results from the study, which is also mirrored by ground control subjects, could help to improve the ability of future crewmembers to interact safely and effectively with each other and with Mission Control, to have a more positive experience in space during multi-cultural, long-duration missions, and to successfully accomplish mission activities.]

FE-1 Skvortsov completed the routine task of shooting two photos of the docking cone of the passive docking assembly (ASP-B) of the MRM2 port occupied by the Soyuz TMA-18/22S, a standard practice after Russian dockings. These images are used to refine current understanding of docking conditions. Alex subsequently was to downlink the pictures via OCA assets. [The objective is to take photo imagery of the scratch or scuff marks left by the head of the docking probe on the internal surface of the drogue (docking cone, ASP) ring, now rotated out of the passageway. Before shooting the picture, the cosmonaut highlights the scuffmark with a marker and writes the date next to it. As other crewmembers before him, Alex used the Nikon D2X digital still camera to take two pictures with the hatch partially closed.]

Working in the SM on the electronics of the ODU Propulsion System behind the food ration locker (panels 245, 246), Oleg removed the out-of-life BFK A11 Command Generator and replaced it with a new spare, then connected its nine cables. [BFK commands ODU valves such as KZBO1 & EGKG2 to open or close.]

FE-6 Creamer initiated another sampling run (the 84th) with the EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health System Gas Chromatograph/Differential Mobility Spectrometer). Soichi deactivated the system ~5 hrs later. [Also known as AQM (Air Quality Monitor), the system is controlled with “Sionex” expert software from the SSC-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.]

Later, Timothy reviewed APEX-Cambium (Advanced Plant Experiments on Orbit-Cambium) payload procedures, then re-initialized & activated the ABRS for payload Run 2, after replacing the air filters in both chambers

Working on the PMA-2 Pressurized Mating Adapter 2), Soichi installed five reflective elements on its docking target in support of the STORRM DTO Sensor Test for Orion RelNav Risk Mitigation Development Test Objective to be performed later in the 19A Mission.

Misha Kornienko installed and inspected SPDs (Subject Positioning Devices) on the TVIS treadmill, prior to starting his first exercise run on the machine. No damage was found.

The crew completed today’s physical workout regime on the TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation (CDR, FE-1, FE-3), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (FE-3, FE-5, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (FE-5, FE-6), and VELO ergometer bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE1). These were the first exercise workouts for Alex and Misha. ). After their runs, Oleg, Alex & Misha inspected the jerry-rigged retainer plate installed by Soichi during his TVIS repair on 4/2.

Skvortsov, Kornienko & Caldwell-Dyson again had about an hour’s time to themselves for general adaptation (station familiarization & acclimatization) as is standard daily rule for fresh crewmembers for the first two weeks after starting residence, if they choose to take it.

At ~8:00am, Tracy had another PMC (Private Medical Conferences), via S- & Ku-band audio/video.

Shortly before sleep time 11:51am), Skvortsov set up the Russian MBI-12 Sonokard payload and start his first experiment session, using a sports shirt from the Sonokard kit with a special device in the pocket for testing a new method for acquiring physiological data without using direct contact on the skin. Measurements are recorded on a data card for return to Earth. [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.]

Wake/Sleep schedule on ISS (EDT):

FD3 7:36pm 11:51am
FD4 8:21pm 12:21pm
FD5 8:51pm 12:51pm
FD6 9:21pm 12:51pm
FD7 9:21pm 1:21pm
FD8 9:51pm 1:51pm
FD9 10:21pm 2:51pm
FD10 11:21pm 3:51pm
FD11 12:21am 3:51pm
FD12 12:21am 3:21pm

No CEO photo targets uplinked for today.

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 8:25am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 346.1 km
Apogee height – 350.0 km
Perigee height – 342.3 km
Period -- 91.46 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.65 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.000571
Solar Beta Angle -- -24.8 deg (magnitude decreasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.74
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours – 136 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 65,234

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Six-crew operations-----------------
04/07/10 -- STS-131/Discovery/19A – MPLM, LMC – docking 3:44am
  • 04/08 -- MPLM install on Node-2 (12:56am)
  • 04/09 -- EVA-1 (1:41am)
  • 04/11 -- EVA-2 (2:16am)
  • 04/13 -- EVA-3 (3:11am)
  • 04/15 -- MPLM install in PLB (9:56am)
04/16/10 -- STS-131/Discovery/19A – undocking 3:55am
04/18/10 -- STS-131/Discovery/19A – land/KSC 8:29am
04/27/10 -- Progress M-03M/35P undock
04/28/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P launch
04/30/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P docking
05/10/10 -- Progress M-04M/36P undock
05/12/10 -- Soyuz 21S relocation (FGB Nadir to SM Aft)
05/14/10 -- STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 – ICC-VLD, MRM-1 “Rassvet”
06/02/10 -- Soyuz TMA-17/21S undock/landing (End of Increment 23)
--------------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-----------------
06/28/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P launch
06/30/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P docking
07/07/10 -- US EVA-15 (Caldwell/Wheelock)
07/23/10 -- Russian EVA-25 (Yurchikhin/Kornienko)
07/26/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P undock
07/29/10 -- STS-134/Endeavour (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS-02)
08/30/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P undock
08/31/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P launch
09/02/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P docking
09/16/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S undock/landing (End of Increment 24)
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
10/27/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P launch
10/29/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P docking
11/26/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing (End of Increment 25)
12/10/10 -- Soyuz TMA-21/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
12/15/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P undock
12/26/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P undock
12/27/10 -- Progress M-09M/41P launch
12/29/10 -- Progress M-09M/41P docking
03/16/11 -- Soyuz TMA-20/24S undock/landing (End of Increment 26)
03/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/26S launch – A. Borisienko (CDR-28)/R, Garan/A.Samokutayev
04/01/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/26S docking
04/27/11 -- Progress M-09M/41P undock
04/28/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P launch
04/30/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P docking
05/17/11 -- Soyuz TMA-21/25S undock/landing (End of Increment 27)
05/31/11 -- Soyuz TMA-23/27S launch – M. Fossum (CDR-29)/S. Furukawa/S. Volkov
06/02/11 -- Soyuz TMA-23/27S docking
06/21/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P launch
06/23/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P docking
08/30/11 -- Progress M-12M/44P launch
09/01/11 -- Progress M-12M/44P docking
09/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-24/28S launch
10/28/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P launch
10/30/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P docking
11/25/11 -- Soyuz TMA-25/29S launch
11/27/11 -- Soyuz TMA-25/29S docking
12/??/11 -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton.