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October 18, 2010
ISS On-Orbit Status 10/18/10

All ISS systems continue to function nominally, except those noted previously or below. Underway: Week 4 of Increment 25

Before breakfast, FE-6 Walker began Part 1 of the periodic personal acoustic measurement protocol by deploying crew-worn acoustic dosimeters from the SMK (Sound Measurement Kit), carried by the Soyuz 24S crew, i.e., Skripochka, Kaleri & Kelly, for 24 hours (with a microphone on the shirt collar). [Tomorrow, in Part 2, Shannon will deploy the three dosimeters at selected locations for static measurements, and in Part 3 the dosimeter data will be downloaded and the instruments stowed. Acoustic data must be taken twice per Increment, each time for the duration of the 16-hour crew workday.]

Later in the day, from 10:15am-11:15am EDT, Shannon also conducted a one-hour noise level measurements survey in the USOS (US Segment) for Week 4, using the SLM (Sound Level Meter) equipment. Data download to the MEC (Medical Equipment Computer) was a subsequent activity. [A total of 38 acoustic measurements were to be obtained, specifically at 6 locations in the Lab, with WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment) turned off, 8 in the JPM, 1 in COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), 1 in A/L (U.S. Airlock), 10 in Node-2, 8 in Node-3, and 4 in Node-1. The SLM gives instantaneous noise levels and their frequency spectra, which are transferred to the MEC laptop via an RS232 cable and later downlinked with regular CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) data dump or via OCA. No exercise was allowed during the SLM survey, to avoid corrupting the acoustic measurements],

After breakfast, FE-3 Kelly started his 1st weekly U.S. “Bisphosphonates” biomedical countermeasures experiment, ingesting an Alendronate pill before breakfast. His overnight fast started last night. [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.]

FE-1 Kaleri’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.

FE-1 also completed his first session with the Russian behavioral assessment TIPOLOGIA (MBI-20), setting up the workstation, connecting equipment, suiting up and launching the program on the RSK1 laptop. [FE-2 Skripochka was available to assist in donning the electrode cap, preparing the head for the electrodes, applying electrode gel from the Neurolab-RM2 kit and taking documentary photography. Data were recorded on a PCMCIA memory card and downlinked via OCA comm. MBI-20 studies typological features of operator activity of the ISS crews in long-term space flight phases, with the subject using a cap with EEG (electroencephalogram) electrodes. The experiment, which records EEGs, consists of the Lüscher test, “adaptive biological control” training, and the games Minesweeper and Tetris. The Lüscher color diagnostic is a psychological test which measures a person's psychophysical state, his/her ability to withstand stress, to perform and to communicate. It is believed to help uncover the cause of psychological stress, which can lead to physical symptoms. An EEG measures and records the electrical activity of the brain.]

Working in Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module), Shannon started the JAXA experiment HydroTropi (Hydrotropism & Auxin-Inducible Gene Expression in Roots Grown under Microgravity Conditions) by gathering & preparing the HydroTropi (HT) parts, watering 4 HT chambers and inserting them in 4 HT MEUs B (Measurement Experiment Units B) with 1G attachment in CBEF IU 1G (Cell Biology Experiment Facility Incubator Unit for 1G). The current experiment will run until 10/22 (Friday). [One of the major purposes of this experiment is to see if roots of cucumber seedlings will bend toward water when they grow in microgravity. Another purpose is to determine the mechanism by which roots bend. A root bends when its two sides grow differently, i.e., when the convex side grows faster than the concave side, the root bends as a result. A plant hormone called "auxin" plays a role in this mechanism. Auxin promotes or suppresses plant growth depending on its concentration in plants. If auxin has a greater effect on one side of a root, growth on this side is suppressed. Then, why does auxin work differently in the two sides of the root? Do some hidden substances control the action of auxin? It is another major purpose of the experiment to study the substances-the genes that control the action of auxin.]

Skripochka & Yurchikhin worked together on the periodic refresh of the IUS AntiVirus program in the Russian VKS auxiliary (non-network) laptops RSS1, RSS2 & RSK2 which are not loaded from the ground, from a special software program working with Norton AV on the FS (File Server) laptop. [After first scanning the FS laptop, the virus database was transferred by flash-card to the other computers, which were then scanned one by one. The networked RSK1, RSE1 & RSE-Med laptops were left On overnight for automatic scanning, to be checked tomorrow for the results.]

CDR Wheelock started another sampling run with the EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health Systems Gas Chromatograph / Differential Mobility Spectrometer); deactivating the system ~5 hrs later. [This was the 33rd session with the GC/DMS unit #1004, after the previous instrument (#1002) was used for approximately 100 runs. 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, CDR replaced the batteries on the prime & backup CSA-CP (Compound Specific Analyzer-Combustion Products) units with new batteries, then zero-calibrated the instruments. [CSA-CP is a passive cabin atmosphere monitor that provides quick response capability during a combustion event (fire). Its collected data are stored on a logger. Following zero calibration, the prime unit was re-deployed at the SM Central Post].

Wheelock also performed the regular battery change and re-calibration of the two hand-held CSA-O2 (CSA-Oxygen) instruments #1041 and #1045, the 9th calibration after their delivery on Mission 20A. (Done last: 9/22).

FE-2 Skripochka completed the regular inspection of the replaceable half-coupling of the 4GB4 hydraulic unit of the KOB-2 (Loop 2) of the Russian SOTR Thermal Control System, checking for coolant fluid hermeticity (leak-tightness).

Working in the DC1 Docking Compartment, Oleg configured the usual pumping equipment (Kompressor-M, hoses, adapters), then initiated urine transfer from an EDV-U container (#874) to the empty BV2 Rodnik storage tank of Progress 37P. Using water from another EDV, FE-2 then flushed the BV1 & BV2 connections. [EDV-U #874 was brought over from the USOS to the DC1 by Scott Kelly who also returned the empty container later to the WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment). Each of the spherical Rodnik tanks BV1 & BV2 consists of a hard shell with a soft membrane (bladder) composed of elastic fluoroplastic. The bladder is used to expel water from the tank by compressed air pumped into the tank volume surrounding the membrane and is leak-tested before urine transfers, i.e., with empty tanks, the bladders are expanded against the tank walls and checked for hermeticity.]

Wheels undertook the regular monthly session of the CHeCS (Crew Health Care Systems) emergency medical operations OBT (On-Board Training) drill, going through a 30-min. exercise to refresh his CMO (Crew Medical Officer) acuity in a number of critical health areas. The video-based proficiency drill today focused on ACLS (Advanced Cardiac Life Support). [The HMS (Health Maintenance Systems) hardware, including ACLS equipment, may be used in contingency situations where crew life is at risk. To maintain proficiency, crewmembers spend one hour per month reviewing HMS and ACLS equipment and procedures via the HMS and ACLS CBT (computer-based training). The training drill, each crewmember for him/herself, refreshes their memory of the on-orbit stowage and deployment locations, equipment etc. and procedures.]

In the ESA COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), Doug removed the ATCS2 (Automatic Temperature Controlled Stowage 2) insert plus insulation in preparation for an upcoming HM (Handling Mechanism) force margin test.

Afterwards, Wheels collected water samples from the WPA WWT (Water Processor Assembly Waste Water Tank).

In the U.S. Lab, Shannon Walker meanwhile took a water sample from the condensate tank, which contains the output of the CCAA (Common Cabin Air Assembly) air conditioner. [After a 300 mL purge, a 300 mL sample was obtained at the RIP (Rack Interface Panel). Both were prepared for return to Earth on ULF5.]

With the Sabatier reactor installed and the ITCS (Internal Thermal Control System) flow within the rack balanced enough to proceed with the Sabatier checkout this week, Shannon Walker connected the necessary QDs (quick disconnects) for CDRA (Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly) and OGS (Oxygen Generator System). [In the OGS in Node-3, FE-6 mated the TOCA (Total Organic Carbon Analyzer) N2/nitrogen hose to the OGS UIP (Utility Interface Panel) N2 connector and later the OGS QD itself. Sabatier may be turned on already tonight, for a “heart-beat” test. Tomorrow and through the end of the week, ground controllers will be performing the checkout operations.]

Walker then worked on consolidating the consumables kit of the VO2max (Max Volume Oxygen) experiment, replacing limited life items & reconfiguring the kit contents.

In order to clear the way for the upcoming (10/21) move of the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox) from COL (loc. F2) to the U.S. Lab (loc. S2), Wheelock & Walker today transferred the MELFI2 (Minus Eighty Laboratory Freezer for ISS 2) from Lab S2 to loc. S1, then connected umbilicals. [Due to the moves, the data on fireports (in each rack) in the current EMER-2 Book will be out of date until arrival of updates with ULF5.]

Wheels also performed the periodic module hatch seal inspection, today at Node-1 Port, A/L IV (Airlock Intravehicular hatch), Lab Aft and Node-3 Nadir & Stbd.

After the recent BRI (SSR/Smart Switch Router) maintenance, Fyodor & Oleg today spent several hours supporting an extensive transmission test of the RS video system over the JSL (Joint Station OpsLAN), which, besides the BRI, includes WAPs (Wireless Access Points) and Ethernet jacks in all RS modules. [Activity steps included restoring nominal RS onboard cable configuration and connecting the Lab ISL (Integrated Station OpsLAN) Router. Performance on all wireless SSCs (Station Support Computers) may have been somewhat degraded during the BRI video test, whose packets had LAN (Local Area Network) priority.]

Alex Kaleri conducted the regular weekly maintenance of the TVIS (Treadmill with Vibration Isolation & Stabilization). [This is primarily an in section of 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.]

Doug Wheelock worked on the ARED exerciser, performing the periodic evacuation of its cylinder flywheels to maintain proper vacuum condition & sensor calibration,

Afterwards, Wheels also completed the monthly maintenance of the T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill, checking its components, pin alignment, rack centering and the snubber jam nut witness marks. [Witness marks (12 total) are applied to the X-, Y- & Z-axis jam nuts on each (of four) snubber arm; their inspection serves to determine to what degree and which jam nuts are backing off.]

Alex performed 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.]

Kaleri also completed the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance by 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).

Kaleri, Skripochka & Kelly again had an hour each set aside for crew onboard orientation plus time for adaptation as required. [During the first two weeks after their arrival, a new ISS crew will have 1 hour a day (or more if needed) to adjust to living in space.]

In the U.S. A/L, FE-3 Kelly initiated the first round of EMU (Extravehicular Mobility Unit) battery recharging in the BSA (Battery Stowage Assembly).

Afterwards, Kelly continued the ongoing gathering & preparing of EVA tools & equipment for the two ULKF5 spacewalks.

Scott also took time out for reviewing setup and operations procedures for his upcoming support of another CFE ICF (Capillary Flow Experiments Interior Corner Flow) test.

Several times during the day, the three Russian flight engineers joined for PAO TV events, first being briefed on filling out their registration form for the statewide Russian Population Census, then demonstrating & discussing the registration procedure by completing their own census forms for Moscow TV.

At ~10:45am, Fyodor, Alex & Oleg had an exercise-related PMC (Private Medical Conference), via S- & Ku-band audio/video, discussing workout issues with exercise specialists.

FE-1, FE-3 & FE-6 had their standard PMCs (Private Medical Conferences), via S- & Ku-band audio/video, Sasha at ~4:40am, Scott at ~9:00am, Shannon at ~1:50pm EDT.

The crew worked out on today’s 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-3), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-1, FE-2, FE-5, FE-6), ARED advanced resistive exercise device (CDR, FE-3, FE-5, FE-6), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR) and VELO ergometer bike with bungee cord load trainer (FE-1, FE-2). [T2 snubber arm inspection is no longer needed after every T2 session but must be done after the last T2 session of the day.]

Conjunction Alert: Flight controllers are tracking a conjunction with Object #33457, a Chinese CZ-4B rocket body. The TCA (Time of Closest Approach) is Tuesday (10/19) at 11:01am EDT. Total miss distance: 2.05 km. Radial miss: 0.18 km. A valid PC (Probability of Collision) number is not yet available but an avoidance maneuver is not required.

No CEO photo targets uplinked for today.

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 9:23am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude – 352.8 km
Apogee height – 358.2 km
Perigee height – 347.5 km
Period -- 91.60 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.65 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0007993
Solar Beta Angle -- 36.4 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.72
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours – 89 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) – 68,287.

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
10/20/10 -- ISS Reboost (under review)
10/26/10 -- Progress M-05M/37P undock
10/27/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P launch
10/29/10 -- Progress M-08M/40P docking
11/01/10 -- STS-133/Discovery launch (ULF5 – ELC4, PMM) ~4:40pm EDT
11/03/10 -- STS-133/Discovery docking ~1:13pm EDT
11/07/10 -- --------------Daylight Saving Time ends-----------
11/10/10 -- STS-133/Discovery undock ~5:40am EST
11/12/10 -- STS-133/Discovery landing (KSC) ~10:39am EST
11/15/10 -- Russian EVA-26
11/30/10 -- Soyuz TMA-19/23S undock/landing (End of Increment 25)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
12/13/10 -- Soyuz TMA-20/25S launch – Kondratyev (CDR-27)/Coleman/Nespoli
12/15/10 -- Soyuz TMA-20/25S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
12/20/10 -- Progress M-07M/39P undock
01/24/11 -- Progress M-08M/40P undock
01/28/11 -- Progress M-09M/41P launch
01/31/11 -- Progress M-09M/41P docking
02/xx/11 -- Russian EVA-28
02/15/11 -- ATV-2 “Johannes Kepler” launch
02/27/11 -- STS-134/Endeavour (ULF6 – ELC3, AMS-02)
03/16/11 -- Soyuz TMA-01M/24S undock/landing (End of Increment 26)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
03/20/11 -- Soyuz TMA-21/26S launch – A. Borisienko (CDR-28)/R.Garan/A.Samokutayev
03/22/11 -- Soyuz TMA-21/26S 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/xx/11 -- Russian EVA-29
05/16/11 -- Soyuz TMA-20/25S undock/landing (End of Increment 27)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/27S launch – M. Fossum (CDR-29)/S. Furukawa/S. Volkov
06/01/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/27S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
06/21/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P launch
06/23/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P docking
08/29/11 -- Progress M-11M/43P undocking
08/30/11 -- Progress M-12M/44P launch
09/01/11 -- Progress M-12M/44P docking
09/16/11 – Soyuz TMA-21/26S undock/landing (End of Increment 28)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-23/28S launch – D.Burbank (CDR-30)/A.Shkaplerov/A.Ivanishin
10/02/11 – Soyuz TMA-23/28S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
10/20/11 -- Progress M-10M/42P undocking
10/21/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P launch
10/23/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P docking
11/16/11 -- Soyuz TMA-22/27S undock/landing (End of Increment 29)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/30/11 -- Soyuz TMA-24/29S launch – O.Kononenko (CDR-31)/A.Kuipers/D.Pettit
12/02/11 -- Soyuz TMA-24/29S docking
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
12/??/11 -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – on Proton.
12/26/11 -- Progress M-13M/45P undock
03/14/12 -- Soyuz TMA-23/28S undock/landing (End of Increment 30)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
03/26/12 -- Soyuz TMA-25/30S launch – G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/K.Valkov
03/28/12 -- Soyuz TMA-25/30S docking
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
05/15/12 -- Soyuz TMA-24/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/29/12 – Soyuz TMA-26/31S launch – S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
05/31/12 – Soyuz TMA-26/31S docking
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
09/09/12 -- Soyuz TMA-25/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/23/12 -- Soyuz TMA-27/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O. Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
09/25/12 – Soyuz TMA-27/32S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
10/07/12 -- Soyuz TMA-26/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/xx/12 -- Soyuz TMA-28/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
11/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-28/33S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
03/xx/12 -- Soyuz TMA-27/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
03/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-29/34S launch.
03/xx/12 – Soyuz TMA-29/34S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------