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May 23, 2010
ISS On-Orbit Status 05/23/10

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. FD10 (Flight Day 10) of STS-132/ULF-4. Sunday – off-duty day. Ahead: Week 10 of Increment 23.

ISS Crew Wake – 12:50am EDT
ISS Crew Sleep – 4:50pm
-- Returning to nominal tomorrow: Wake 2:00am, sleep 5:30pm.

ISS and STS-132/Atlantis are flying in separate orbits again. [After the traditional Crew Photo event (6:05am), Crew Conference (6:25am), covered by PAO TV, and Crew Farewell at ~8:10am EDT, hatch closure, worked by Tracy Caldwell-Dyson on the ISS side & Piers Sellers on the Shuttle side, was completed at 8:43am. With the Shuttle controlling attitude of the mated stack with Orbiter ORB control from ~8:30am, Ken Ham & Tony Antonelli initiated the standard one-hour leak check on the ODS (Orbiter Docking System). Atlantis undocked in darkness (local sunset 11:07am) at 11:22am from PMA-2 (Pressurized Mating Adapter 2). Sunrise: 11:42am. After separation, PLT Antonelli completed a 270-deg station flyaround, and the Orbiter crew obtained photo/video imagery of the ISS. Final sep burn (Sep 2) was at ~1:05pm, retrograde. Atlantis returns to Earth on 5/26 (Wednesday) after its 12-day mission. First landing opportunity at KSC is at 8:48am.]

At wake-up, 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 10/19/09 in gaps between the BZh Liquid Unit and the oxygen outlet pipe (filter FA-K) plus hydrogen outlet pipe (filter FA-V). [The CDR again inspected the filters before bedtime, currently a daily requirement per plan, with photographs to be taken if the filter packing is discolored.]

FE-1 Skvortsov did the daily morning check on the TBU Universal Bioengineering Thermostat container and reported its current internal temperature to TsUP-Moscow.

After breakfast, FE-5 Noguchi supported the weekly (every Sunday’s) U.S. “Bisphosphonates” biomedical countermeasures experiment, ingesting an Alendronate pill before breakfast. [The Bisphosphonates study should determine whether antiresorptive agents (that help reduce bone loss) in conjunction with the routine in-flight exercise program will protect ISS crewmembers from the regional decreases in bone mineral density documented on previous ISS missions. Two dosing regimens are being tested: (1) an oral dose of 70 mg of Alendronate taken weekly starting 3 weeks prior to flight and then throughout the flight and (2) an intravenous (IV) dose of 4 mg Zoledronic Acid, administered just once approximately 45 days before flight. The rationale for including both Alendronate and Zoledronic Acid is that two dosing options will maximize crew participation, increase the countermeasure options available to flight surgeons, increase scientific opportunities, and minimize the effects of operational and logistical constraints. The primary measurement objective is to obtain preflight and postflight QCT (Quantitative Computed Tomography) scans of the hip. The QCT scans will provide volumetric bone density information of both cortical and trabecular (spongy) bone regions of the hip.]

Crew activities before and during undocking included –
  • FE-6 Creamer closing the protective window shutters on Kibo, Lab and Cupola,
  • Creamer also working at the JPM BLB (Biolab), preparing the ESA Thermal Container for receiving four WAICO-2 ECs (Waving & Coiling of Arabidopsis at Different Gravity Levels 2 Experiment Containers) from their cold storage in the TCU1 (Temperature Control Unit 1), then transferring the container to the Shuttle for return;
  • FE-2 Caldwell-Dyson & FE-5 Noguchi reviewing DCB (Double Cold Bag) sample packing & transfer procedures, then transferring the remaining bio samples to the Shuttle;
  • Noguchi setting up the PAO HD TV equipment for transmitting Crew Farewell activities to the ground;
  • Timothy & Ken Ham terminating O2 (oxygen) pump-over to the ISS and tearing down the O2 transfer equipment [total O2 transferred: 63 lbs, with 47 lbs going to the HGPT (High Pressure Gas Tank), the remainder to A/L (Airlock)/campout prebreathing; total N2 (nitrogen) transferred: 19 lbs];
  • TJ also configuring the equipment for PMA-2 depressurization after the undocking, then
  • Setting up the departure configuration at the PMA-2 and standing by at the Lab RWS (Robotics Workstation) A31p laptop with a stopwatch to monitor the proper performance of automatic undocking software for the PMA-2 departure under Russian thruster attitude control and to immediately mode ISS to attitude control if undocking software fails [the procedure provides for the crewmember to take over the automatic operational attitude control sequence manually if the software does not resume control after the period of free drift a few minutes after physical separation. Free drift is employed to prevent a conflict between the control systems of the two vehicles (ISS & Shuttle) and to “limp” (unload) the docking mechanisms], and
  • FE-2 Caldwell-Dyson using the NIKON digital camera and PD-100 camcorder to document the undocking, backing away & separation of the Atlantis.

After the undocking –
  • TJ & Tracy depressed the PMA-2 and conducted the subsequent leak check (by periodically monitoring pressure readings) at the MPEV (Manual Pressure Equalization Valve); they then
  • Took down the BPSMU (Battery Powered Speaker Microphone Unit) and its long single drag-through line, used during the docked phase, and stowed the equipment;
  • Oleg Kotov reconfigured the C&T (Command & Tracking) comm system in the RS (Russian Segment), setting it up for nominal operations;
  • Soichi Noguchi removed the THC IMV (Temperature & Humidity Control Intermodule Ventilation) air duct in Node-2, and
  • Creamer powered down the PCS (Portable Computer System) laptops in the A/L and either COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) or JPM, as per preference.

FE-1 Skvortsov verified proper operation of the running Russian TEKh-15/DAKON-M IZGIB (“Bend”) experiment in the SM (Service Module) for taking structural dynamics data during the Shuttle undocking. Afterwards, Alexander downlinked the measurement data to the ground. [Data calldown to TsUP/Moscow must be done once a day during joint flight of ULF-4 with the ISS, plus the file downlink and restart every third day. IZGIB has the objective to help update mathematical models of the ISS gravitation environment, using accelerometers of the Russian SBI Onboard Measurement System, the GIVUS high-accuracy angular rate vector gyrometer of the SUDN Motion Control & Navigation System and other accelerometers for unattended measurement of micro-accelerations at science hardware accommodation locations - (1) in operation of onboard equipment having rotating parts (gyrodynes, fans), (2) when establishing and keeping various ISS attitude modes, and (3) when performing crew egresses into space and physical exercises.]
IZGIB has the objective to help update mathematical models of the ISS gravitation environment, using accelerometers of the Russian SBI Onboard Measurement System, the GIVUS high-accuracy angular rate vector gyrometer of the SUDN Motion Control & Navigation System and other accelerometers for unattended measurement of micro-accelerations at science hardware accommodation locations - (1) in operation of onboard equipment having rotating parts (gyrodynes, fans), (2) when establishing and keeping various ISS attitude modes, and (3) when performing crew egresses into space and physical exercises.]

Creamer performed the standard zero calibration on the four new CSA-CP (Compound Specific Analyzer-Combustion Products) instruments delivered by ULF-4 which exhibited signs of sensor contamination upon arrival (but are now displaying readings within acceptable limits). [The CSA-CP is a passive cabin atmosphere monitor that provides quick response capability during a combustion event (fire). Its collected data on CO (Carbon Monoxide), HCN (Hydrogen Cyanide) & HCl (Hydrogen Chloride) are stored on a logger. New CSA-CPs generally require a certain acclimatization period for “gassing out”, i.e., getting rid of gaseous contaminations brought up from Earth, which then necessitates “zeroing”, i.e., re-calibration to the zero point.]

TJ also configured the PDGF (Power & Data Grapple Fixture) retrieved by the EVA-3 crew from the Atlantis payload bay and brought into the A/L, for final stowage in the CL (Crew Lock).

FE-5 completed the (currently frequent) offloading of the WPA (Water Processor Assembly) from WRS (Water Recovery System) Rack 1 into a CWC-I (Collapsible Water Container-Iodine) with the common H2O transfer hose (which took about 23 min) from the PWD (Potable Water Dispenser) Auxiliary Port, then flushed the system.

CDR Kotov set up the equipment for his 4th onboard session with the Russian experiment DYKHANIE (MBI-18, “Respiration”) and undertook the test, controlled from the RSE-Med laptop and supported by ground specialist tagup. Oleg then closed down the hardware and stowed it. [Dykhanie-1 uses two body belts (PG-T/thoracic, PG-A/abdominal), a calibrator, resistor, mouthpiece, etc., to study fundamental physiological mechanisms of the external breathing function of crewmembers under long-duration orbital flight conditions. During the experiment, physiological measurements are taken and recorded with a pneumotachogram, a thoracic pneumogram, an abdominal pneumogram, and pressure data in the oral cavity. All experimentally derived plus salient environmental data along with personal data of the subject are recorded on PCMCIA (Personal Computer Memory Card International Association) card for return to the ground at end of the Expedition. Objectives include determining the dynamics of the relationship between thoracic (pectoral) and abdominal breathing function reserves and their realization potential during spontaneous breathing, the coordinated spontaneous respiratory movements in terms of thoracic and abdominal components of volumetric, time & rate parameters of spontaneous respiratory cycle, identification of the features of humoral-reflex regulation of breathing by dynamics of ventilation sensitivity of thoracic and abdominal components to chemoreceptor stimuli, etc. Overall, the experiment is intended to provide a better understanding of the basic mechanisms of pulmonary respiration/gas exchange gravitational relations of cosmonauts.]

After Mikhail Kornienko terminated overnight charging of the KPT-2 Piren battery, he & Alexander Skvortsov ran another session with the Russian KPT-2 BAR payload for about 2.5 hrs, taking background environmental parameters in the SM in areas sampled on 3/4-5 by Oleg Kotov with the KPT-12/Expert experiment and found to have high microflora growth indications behind panel 250 and on specific surface areas of the pressurized shell. FE-1 & FE-3 used the new Piren-B Pyro-endoscope instrument and Iva-6A Thermal Hygrometer (to identify potential condensation areas), with the RSE1 laptop. The measurements are required to forecast the rate of local shell micro-destruction and to develop measures to extend station life. [Piren-B, a video-endoscope with pyrosensor, is part of the methods & means being used on ISS for detecting tiny leaks in ISS modules which could lead to cabin depressurization. Objective of the Russian KPT-12/EXPERT science payload is to measure environmental parameters (temperature, humidity, air flow rate) and module shell surface temperatures behind SM panels and other areas susceptible to possible micro-destruction (corrosion), before and after insolation (day vs. night). Besides Piren-B, the payload uses a remote infrared thermometer (Kelvin-Video), a thermohygrometer (Iva-6A), a heat-loss thermoanemometer/thermometer (TTM-2) and an ultrasound analyzer (AU) to determine environmental data in specific locations and at specific times. Activities include documentary photography with the NIKON D2X camera and flash.]

Misha also conducted 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.]

After Shuttle departure, Oleg Kotov & Sasha Skvortsov had another 2 hrs set aside for transferring cargo from the MRM1 Rassvet module, docked at FGB nadir, keeping a running account of the moves in the IMS (Inventory Management System).

The CDR also conducted the periodic (currently daily) 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. This checkup is especially important when the ventilation/circulation system has to cope with a larger crew on board, recently twelve persons.]

Oleg, TJ & Soichi again had ~60 min set aside for regular crew departure preparations, working on the standard end-of-increment cleanup preparatory to their return. [It is usual for crewmembers to be granted reduced workdays for making their departure preparations, as their return date approaches.]

CDR, FE-1 & FE-6 had their weekly PFCs (Private Family Conferences) via S-band/audio and Ku-band/MS-NetMeeting application (which displays the uplinked ground video on an SSC laptop), Oleg at ~3:20am, Sasha at ~5:35am, TJ at ~2:30pm EDT.

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

No CEO (Crew Earth Observation) photo targets uplinked for today.

Sleep cycle shifting: Crew sleep/wake cycle is shifting, returning to normal on 5/24-25.
Current schedule for ISS crew (EDT):


ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 7:38am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 346.8 km
Apogee height – 353.5 km
Perigee height – 340.1 km
Period -- 91.47 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.65 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0010009
Solar Beta Angle -- -24.4 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.74
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 56 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 65,958

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Six-crew operations-----------------
05/26/10 -- STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 deorbit (KSC ~7:45am; KSC2 ~9:21am, EDW ~10:51am EDT)
05/26/10 -- STS-132/Atlantis/ULF4 nominal landing (KSC ~8:48 am EDT)
05/26/10 -- ISS Stage Deboost by 37P (~2:30am EDT)
06/02/10 -- Soyuz TMA-17/21S undock/landing (End of Increment 23)
-------------- Three-crew operations -------------
06/15/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S launch – Wheelock (CDR-25)/Walker/Yurchikhin
06/17/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-----------------
06/22/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S relocation (SM Aft to MRM1)
06/30/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P launch
07/02/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P docking
07/08/10 -- US EVA-15 (Caldwell/Wheelock)
07/23/10 -- Russian EVA-25 (Yurchikhin/Kornienko)
09/07/10 -- Progress M-06M/38P undock
09/08/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P launch
09/10/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P docking
09/16/10 -- STS-133/Discovery launch (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM)
09/22/10 -- STS-133/Discovery undock
09/24/10 -- Soyuz TMA-18/22S undock/landing (End of Increment 24)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
10/10/10 -- Soyuz TMA-20/24S launch – Kelly (CDR-26)/Kaleri/Skripochka
10/12/10 -- Soyuz TMA-20/24S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
10/26/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P undock
10/27/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P launch
10/29/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P docking
11/xx/10 -- STS-134/Endeavour (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS-02)
11/10/10 -- Russian EVA-26
11/17/10 – Russian EVA-27
11/26/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing (End of Increment 25)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
12/10/10 -- Soyuz TMA-21/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
12/12/10 -- Soyuz TMA-21/25S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
12/15/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P undock
12/xx/10 -- Russian EVA-28
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)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
03/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/26S launch – A. Borisienko (CDR-28)/R, Garan/A.Samokutayev
04/01/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/26S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
04/26/11 -- Progress M-09M/41P undock
04/27/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P launch
04/29/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P docking
05/16/11 -- Soyuz TMA-21/25S undock/landing (End of Increment 27)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/31/11 -- Soyuz TMA-23/27S launch – M. Fossum (CDR-29)/S. Furukawa/S. Volkov
06/01/11 -- Soyuz TMA-23/27S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
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
09/16/11 – Soyuz TMA-22/26S undock/landing (End of Increment 28)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-24/28S launch
10/02/11 – Soyuz TMA-24/28S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
10/21/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P launch
10/23/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P docking
11/16/11 -- Soyuz TMA-23/27S undock/landing (End of Increment 29)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-25/29S launch
12/02/11 -- Soyuz TMA-25/29S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
12/??/11 -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton.
12/26/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P undock
01/xx/12 -- ATV-3 launch– Ariane 5 (ESA) U/R