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April 21, 2010
ISS On-Orbit Status 04/21/10

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

At wake-up, CDR Kotov terminated his 7th 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.]

Later, Kotov performed the regular daily early-morning check of the aerosol filters at the currently running Russian Elektron O2 generator which Maxim Suraev had installed on 10/19/09 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, currently a daily requirement per plan, with photographs to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

Also at wake-up, FE-2 Caldwell-Dyson, FE-5 Soichi Noguchi & FE-6 Timothy Creamer undertook 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.]

FE-1 Skvortsov’s morning inspection today included the weekly checkup behind ASU/toilet panel 139 in the SM (Service Module) on a fluid connector (MNR-NS) of the SM-U urine collection system, looking for potential moisture.

After Oleg Kotov’s inspection & checkout on 4/15 of the BITS2-12 onboard telemetry system’s LKT local temperature sensor commutator (TA251M1B) of the Soyuz TMA-18/22S spacecraft, FE-1 Skvortsov today made repairs on the LKT1B1 device in the spacecraft’s Orbital Module (BO) by rearranging connectors.

Having BITS2-12 and VD-SU monitoring mode turned off and the Russian Vozdukh CO2 removal system powered down, Kotov removed its CO2 Differential Gas Analyzer (TP2286) and replaced it with a new spare. Afterwards, BITS2-12 and Vozdukh were activated again.

With the video camcorder set up again in the SM for monitoring subsequent activities, Alexander & Mikhail spent much of their workday on Part 2 of the extensive TVIS treadmill IFM (Inflight Maintenance), performing maintenance to restore the exercise machine to full service. After the IFM, Sasha removed the video setup and its hatch-dragthrough cable. [The current combined (annual + monthly + weekly) TVIS maintenance tasks are: Inspect belt slats, weld nuts, and blue rollers; tension the tread belt; replace the forward right stabilizer; change out springs in the forward left, aft right and aft left stabilizers; install flywheel case, lubricate the transfer case; inspect gyro wire ropes and pivot spacer movement; inspect/replace corner components; perform monthly/quarterly inspections and cleaning; perform an acoustic survey & speed characterization; perform ACO (Activation & Checkout). Today’s work steps consisted of completing change-out of springs in the forward left and aft left stabilizers, and to remove the aft right stabilizer from the chassis for its spring change-out tomorrow. Background: The four TVIS stabilizers each contain a linear motor which moves a mass-spring system to provide an equal and opposite force to footfall forces; this serves to stabilize Z-axis & pitch motion of the treadmill to minimize the transmission of loads to the station. The springs have a limited life-time and can fail due to fatigue.]

Tracy Caldwell-Dyson set up all PPFS (Portable Pulmonary Function System) hardware, including MBS (Mixing Bag System), powered it up and then spent several hours performing her first session with the VO2Max assessment, integrated with Thermolab. Later, she downloaded the data, including Thermolab, to a PCS (Portable Computer System) laptop, powered down, cleaned up and temporarily moved all hardware aside for subsequent operation. [The experiment VO2Max uses the PPFS, CEVIS ergometer cycle, PFS (Pulmonary Function System) gas cylinders and mixing bag system, plus multiple other pieces of hardware to measure oxygen uptake, cardiac output, and more. The exercise protocol comprises a 2-min rest period, then three 5-min stages at workloads eliciting 25%, 50% & 75% of aerobic capacity as measured pre-flight, followed by a 25-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 cool down period follows at the 25% load. Rebreathing measurements are initiated by the subject during the last minute of each stage. Constraints are: no food 2 hrs prior to exercise start, no caffeine 8 hrs prior to exercise, and must be well hydrated. SDRM (Space Dynamically Responding Ultrasonic Matrix System]

The FE-2 also activated the hardware for the SpaceDRUMS (Space Dynamically Responding Ultrasonic Matrix) experiment. Several hours later, the equipment was turned off again. [SpaceDRUMS suspends a solid or liquid sample using 20 acoustic beam emitters during combustion or heat-based synthesis. Materials can be produced in microgravity with an unparalleled quality of shape and composition. SpaceDRUMS will support scientific understanding of processes like combustion synthesis and self-propagating high temperature synthesis and also provide direct commercial benefits from materials processing. Advanced ceramics, polymer, and colloids can be processed in SpaceDRUMS.]

After completing the first two parts yesterday, Noguchi took up the third part (of 5) of the periodic acoustic measurement protocol by recording post-sleep data of the crew-worn acoustic dosimeters, later deploying the dosimeters statically (Part 4), one at the SM Central Post, one in Node-2 and the third in an empty rack bay in the Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module), away from air flow, taking photographs of the locations. Tonight, a crewmember will record the data taken by the three static dosimeters during the day (Part 5). [Acoustic data must be taken twice per Increment, each time for the duration of the 16-hour crew workday.]

In the Kibo JPM, Noguchi reconfigured the MAC ACU (Media Access Control Address Converter Unit) by switching its utility power jumper/cable to a different outlet (UOP/Utility Outlet Panel to WS PDB/Worksite Power Distribution Box).

While in JPM, the FE-5 Noguchi serviced the CGSE Common Gas Supply Equipment), terminating the carbon dioxide gas supply from the upper CO2 GBU (Gas Bottle Unit). [CO2 supply was started on 3/24.]

Also in the Kibo laboratory, Soichi closed out the MyoLab payload, storing or trashing the equipment used in the sample fixation activities with TJ Creamer, then configuring the CB (Clean Bench) for stowage. [MyoLab experimentation concerns studies of a rat muscle gene modified cell line to determine the effects of microgravity.]

Later, Noguchi undertook another session of the U.S. PFE (Periodic Fitness Evaluation) protocol as subject, a monthly 1.5-hr. procedure which checks up on BP & ECG during programmed exercise on the CEVIS cycle ergometer in the US Lab. Readings were taken with the BP/ECG (blood pressure/electrocardiograph) and the HRM (heart rate monitor) watch with its radio transmitter. Creamer acted as Operator/CMO. [BP/ECG provides automated noninvasive systolic and diastolic blood pressure measurements while also monitoring and displaying accurate heart rates on a continual basis at rest and during exercise.]

Afterwards, Soichi spent several hours conducting the periodic USOS (US Orbital Segment) hatch seal inspection. [This is regularly activity was performed with a vacuum cleaner/brush plus other tools today on the hatches at Node-3 (Deck, Stbd), Node-1 (Fwd, Aft, Stbd), Airlock (IV), Lab (Fwd), Node-2 (Stbd, Port), COL (Port), JPM (Stbd, Zenith),and JLP (Nadir). Node-2 (Aft), Lab (Aft) and Node-1 (Port) will be inspected after T2 Relocation.]

Activities completed by Tracy Caldwell-Dyson included –
  • Swapping out the 9V batteries in the racks of the Node-2 Port & Node-2 Stbd CQs (Crew Quarters) with fresh ones,
  • Performing routine service on the prime CSA-CP (Compound Specific Analyzer-Combustion Products) unit (#1042) by replacing its battery with a new one,
  • Conducting the periodic status checks and necessary maintenance of the CGBA-5 (Commercial Generic Bioprocessing Apparatus 5) payload,
  • Completing MELFI-1 (Minus Eighty Degree Laboratory Freezer for ISS 1) preparation for Stage 19A science sample preservation by retrieving and inserting 4 “ice bricks” (-32degC) in the freezer [two bricks went into two sections each of Dewar 1 Tray C], and
  • Breaking out & setting up the equipment for her U.S. PHS (Periodic Health Status) w/Blood Labs exam, scheduled tomorrow, a clinical evaluation of Tracy as subject, with TJ Creamer assisting as CMO (Crew Medical Officer) for the blood sampling part [today’s task included an electronic function test and control analysis of the blood lab equipment, viz., the PCBA (Portable Clinical Blood Analyzer), which was then temporarily stowed.]

CDR Kotov completed the periodic (currently daily) checkout & performance verification of IP-1 airflow sensors in the various RS (Russian Segment) 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.]

Kotov performed startup and initialization of the RS radiation payload suite “Matryoshka-R” (RBO-3-2), initializing and deploying new Bubble dosimeters. [Eight Bubble dosimeter detectors (A09-A16) were positioned at their exposure locations around the RS. The deployment locations of the detectors were photo-documented with the NIKON D2X camera and also reported to TsUP via log sheet over OCA. The complex Matryoshka payload suite is designed for sophisticated radiation studies. Note: Matryoshka is the name for the traditional Russian set of nested dolls.]

In preparation for the next Progress arrival, M-05M/37P on 4/30, Oleg & Misha, with TsUP support, conducted the standard 30-min intermodular space-to-space (wireless) test of the TORU teleoperated rendezvous & docking system, i.e., between the TORU control station in the SM and the Progress 36P, docked at DC-1 Nadir. Progress DPO (Approach & Attitude Control) thrusters were not commanded. [TORU is the manually teleoperated backup approach and docking system for the automated Progress ships. It will be on "hot standby" during the upcoming arrival of Progress 37P.]

Oleg also did 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 and replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers.]

FE-6 Creamer set up a CDM (Carbon Dioxide Monitor), #1013, close to his breathing zone throughout her workday, to be stowed before sleeptime. [Station time (GMT) and CDM clock was called down to MCC-H for correlation with the data downloaded from the CDM.]

Afterwards TJ Creamer configured the MWA (Maintenance Work Area) in the Kibo JPM for regular service on the science payload APEX-Cambium (APXC/Advanced Plant Experiments on Orbit-Cambium), then harvested Run 2A plants of the TAGES (Transgenic Arabidopsis Gene Expression System) experiment, chemically preserving the GFP (Green Fluorescent Protein) reporter gene plants for post-flight analysis. Documentary photography was taken also. [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 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).]

FE-6 also started another sampling run (the 88th) with the EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health System Gas Chromatograph/Differential Mobility Spectrometer), deactivating 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.]

In the US Airlock, Timothy terminated the regeneration of METOX (Metal Oxide) CO2 absorber canisters #0005 & #0007 and initiated the bake-out process on the next set, canisters #0011 & #0019.

Later, TJ had 2 hrs set aside for updating 3 onboard SODF (Station Operations Data File) Warning books with 19A-arrived PCNs (Page Change Notices). [The activity involved collecting 3 copies of the 20A Warning Book from the Lab, SM & FGB, replacing 146 pages each, discarding the old pages and redeploying the books in their nominal locations.]

In the COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), the FE-6 performed Part 1 of a functional check of the KUBIK freezer in its EDR (European Drawer Rack) drawer, checking its LED (Light Emitting Diode) display and setting its temperature to +6 degC. [Temperature checks will be performed tomorrow.]

Shortly before sleep time, FE-1 Skvortsov will set up the Russian MBI-12 Sonokard payload and start his 2nd 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. Oleg took photography of Sasha’s preps. [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.]

The CDR had an hour set aside for more newsreel shooting using the using the SONY HVR-Z7 #2 high-definition camcorder as part of the ongoing effort to create a photo & video imagery database on the flight of ISS-23/24 (Flight Chronicles”). [Footage subjects to be focused on include life on the station, personal hygiene, food intake, playing with water, enjoying weightlessness, exercise, moving about, station interior, Earth surface, space clothing, cosmonaut at work, station cleaning, etc. The photo/video imagery is saved digitally on HDDs (Hard Disk Drives) for return to Earth on Soyuz.]

At ~4:15am EDT, Noguchi conducted his regular tagup with the Japanese Flight Control Team at SSIPC (Space Station Integration & Promotion Center)/Tsukuba via S-band/audio. [This conference is scheduled once every week, between the ISS crewmembers and SSIPC.]

At ~12:20pm, Noguchi had his regular PMC (Private Medical Conferences), via S- & Ku-band audio/video.

At ~1:50pm, Tracy & TJ were interviewed via PAO TV exchange by Tina Prehogan, Producer of Unanimous Productions.

At ~4:35pm, Oleg is scheduled to downlink PAO TV greetings to the “Miss Charming Beauty” Pageant at N.E. Bauman MGTU (Moscow State Technical University) on 4/22 and pose one question (of three uplinked) to the participants of the contest.

Noguchi set up the video equipment to cover his and Creamer’s subsequent ARED workouts for real-time (live) biomechanical evaluation by ground specialists, and later tore it down for stowage.

The crew completed today’s 2-hr. physical workout protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-2), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-2, FE-3, FE-5, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR, FE-1, FE-6, FE-6) and VELO ergometer bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-1, FE-3).

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today were Bangui, Central African Republic (crew could probably expect partly cloudy conditions over this target; however they may have had an opportunity to image this capital city. Looking slightly left of track on the Ubangi River, the most important north-bank tributary of the Congo River. Visual cue is the river and a major bend in the river. The city appears as a light-toned wedge at the bend. The city [pop.~630,000] was founded in 1889 as the main city of the French colony Oubangui-Chari, a part of French Equatorial Africa, with rapid communication possible by boat downstream to Brazzaville near the mouth of the Congo River), St. John's, Antigua and Barbuda (St. John's is the capital and largest city of Antigua and Barbuda. It has a population of approximately 24,000 [2000]. Looking slightly right of track for the city of St. John's), Tarawa Atoll, Kiribati (Tarawa is an atoll in the central Pacific Ocean. It is the capital of the Republic of Kiribati. Looking to the left of orbit track), and Vaiaku Village, Funafuti, Tuvalu (Vaiaku is a small village in Tuvalu. It is located on the southern coast of Funafuti atoll. The population of Vaiaku is 516 [2002]. Looking left of track).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 7:53am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 344.4 km
Apogee height – 346.6 km
Perigee height – 342.2 km
Period -- 91.42 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.64 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0003274
Solar Beta Angle -- 42.7 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.75
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 93 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 65,454

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Six-crew operations-----------------
04/22/10 -- Progress M-03M/35P undock – 12:32:30pm EDT
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 TMA-17/21S 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)
0*7/23/10 -- 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.