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December 14, 2011
ISS On-Orbit Status 12/14/11

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

After wakeup, FE-1 Shkaplerov performed the routine inspection of the SM (Service Module) PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection.

At wake-up, CDR Burbank completed his 7th post-sleep session of the Reaction Self Test (Psychomotor Vigilance Self Test on the ISS) protocol. [RST is done 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-2 Ivanishin took his first MBI-24 “SPRUT-2” (“Squid-2”) test, part of Russian medical research on the distribution and behavior of human body fluids in zero gravity, along with PZEh-MO-8 body mass measurement using the IM device.[Supported by the RSS-Med A31p laptop with new software (Vers. 1.6) in the SM, the test uses the Profilaktika kit, with data recorded on PCMCIA memory cards, along with Sergey’s body mass values and earlier recorded MO-10 Hematocrit value, but skipping “fat fold” measurements. Experiment requisites are the Sprut securing harness, skin electrodes (cuffs), and RSS-Med for control and data storage. The “Pinguin” suit or Braslet-M cuffs, if worn, have to be taken off first. Electrode measurements are recorded at complete rest and relaxed body position. The actual recording takes 3-5 minutes, during which the patient has to remain at complete rest.]

Shkaplerov serviced the SRVK-2M condensate water processor system in the SM, replacing BKBKV purification column of the BKV water conditioning unit with a new spare (#1006016), after flushing the lines using a newly-built EDV container. The old BKV unit was pre-packed for disposal. [The SRVK-2M, with its BKO multifiltration unit, removes dissolved mineral and organic impurities from the condensate. Downstream from it, the condensate water is treated in the BKV water conditioning unit with salts for taste and silver ions for preservation, before it flows to the KPV potable water container.]

For his on-going 2nd Ambulatory Monitoring session of the ESA ICV (Integrated Cardiovascular) Alternate experiment, Burbank reached the midpoint at about 7:45am EST, after which he started the second 24h data collection period. [For the second 24 hr period, the Cardiopres was temporarily doffed and the HM2 HiFi CF Card and AA Battery were changed out to allow continuation of the session for another 24 hours. After data collection is complete, the Actiwatches and both HM2 HiFi CF Cards are downloaded to the HRF PC1, while Cardiopres data are downloaded to the EPM (European Physiology Module) Rack and transferred to the HRF PC1 via a USB key for downlink. The sessions are scheduled at or around FD14, FD30, FD75, FD135 and R-15 (there will be fewer sessions if mission duration is less than six months).

For troubleshooting the Russian SKV-1 air conditioner, which has ceased functioning and shut down, Ivanishin took resistance (continuity) measurements at the compressor unit, checking connectors and taking documentary photography of the BP power supply connector panel to evaluate the feasibility of removal.

Afterwards, Anatoly continued the current round of the monthly preventive maintenance of RS (Russian Segment) ventilation systems, today inspecting & cleaning “Group B1” ventilator fans & grilles in the SM with the vacuum cleaner.

With STTS audio comm systems temporarily configured for crew presence in the MRM2 “Poisk” module, Anton conducted another active session for the Russian experiment KPT-10 “Kulonovskiy Kristall” (Coulomb Crystal), followed by downlinking the video footage obtained with a SONY HVR-Z1J camcorder over two RGS (Russian Groundsite) passes (9:05am & 10:40am) and reconfiguring STTS to nominal. [KPT-10 studies dynamic and structural characteristics of the Coulomb systems formed by charged dispersed diamagnetic macroparticles in the magnetic trap, investigating the following processes onboard the ISS RS: condensed dust media, Coulomb crystals, and formation of Coulomb liquids due to charged macroparticles. Coulomb systems are structures following Coulomb’s Law, a law of physics describing the electrostatic interaction between electrically charged particles. It was essential to the development of the theory of electromagnetism.]

The CDR conducted the periodic inspection of the PEPs (Portable Emergency Provisions), checking PFEs (Portable Fire Extinguishers, PBAs (Portable Breathing Apparatus), and EHTKs (Extension Hose Tee Kits). Three PBAs were moved from the A/L (Airlock) back to the PMM ZSR (Permanent Multipurpose Module Zero-G Storage Rack). [PFEs: 2 in Node-1, 1 in A/L (Airlock), 2 in Lab,1 in Node-2, 2 in Node-3, 2 in JPM, 1 in JLP, 2 in COL, 1 in PMM. PBA O2 Bottles: 5 in Node-1, 1 in A/L, 2 in Lab, 1 in Node-2, 2 in Node-3, 2 in JPM, 1 in JLP, 2 in COL, 1 in PMM. QDMAs or Prebreathe Masks: 6 in Node-1, 2 in A/L, 2 in Lab, 2 in Node-2, 2 in Node-3, 2 in JPM, 1 in JLP, 2 in COL, 1 in PMM. EHTKs: 2 in Node-1, 1 in Lab, 2 in Node-2, 1 in Node-3.]

While overflying RGS communication windows on 12:15pm-12:39pm and 1:49pm-2:09pm EST, TsUP/Moscow and FE-1 Shkaplerov conducted VHF comm tests, first on the VHF1 channel, later on VHF2.

FE-2 Ivanishin completed the 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 GA-MRM1, FGB PGO–FGB GA, and FGB GA–Node-1.]

Upload of the new software Vers. 8.05 to upgrade the Russian BVS onboard computer system began at ~8:30am and extends through ~3:00pm.

In support of the upgrade, Ivanishin deactivated the RS3 laptop at ~11:40am, activated RS2 at ~12:50pm and ran tests of the command & data link between the RS2, KTsP2 (Central Post Computer 2/CPC2), TsVM (Central Computer/CC) and TVM (Terminal Computer/TC) at ~12:55pm, supported by ground tagup. [As part of the software update, TVM and TsVM were to be restarted from the ground at ~1:15pm without context data and monitored for several minutes. During this time, the Russian MCS (Motion Control System) is unavailable for attitude control. Return to nominal systems configurations, including restart of the Elektron O2 generator and re-enablement of thrusters for attitude control and response to desaturation requests from USOS CMG (Control Moment Gyroscope) operation, is scheduled on DO3 between 1:50pm – 2:25pm.]

For the duration of the software upgrade, Shkaplerov shut down the Vozdukh carbon dioxide removal system, to turn it back on afterwards.

Also later in the day, Ivanishin will support the ground-commanded reactivation of the Elektron-VM O2 generator (~2:10pm-2:25pm), first performing the usual buffer volume compression, then monitoring the external temperature of its BD secondary purification unit for the first 10 minutes of operations to ensure that there was no overheating. Elektron-VM had been turned off earlier by the ground (~6:30am-6:45am) for the software upload. [The gas analyzer used on the Elektron during nominaloperations for detecting hydrogen (H2) in the O2 line (which could cause dangerous overheating) is not included in the control algorithm until 10 minutes after Elektron startup.]

Anton had ~1h10m for more unloading and transfers of cargo from Progress 45P to the ISS for stowage, guided by an uplinked loading plan. [Of the approximately 1166 listed entries on 45P, about 404 are USOS items. Progress M-13M is to remain docked at the DC1 for about 3 months, and its unloading continues as a long-term activity.]

Dan also had ~3 hrs set aside for unpacking & stowing US cargo delivered on 45P.

FE-2 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, replacement of EDV-SV waste water and EDV-U urine containers and filling EDV-SV, KOV (for Elektron), EDV-ZV & EDV on RP flow regulator.]

FE-1 took care of 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).

Anton performed his 3rd collection session 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.]

The CDR had another time slot set aside for making entries in his electronic Journal on his personal SSC (Station Support Computer). [Required are three journaling sessions per week.]

At ~11:35am. Burbank had his standard weekly PMC (Private Medical Conference) via S- & Ku-band audio/video. Anton & Anatoly held a workout PMC each with an exercise expert on the ground, at ~4:15am and ~4:45am, resp.

Before Presleep, Burbank will turn on the MPC (Multi Protocol Converter) and start the Ku-band data flow of video recorded during the day to the ground, with POIC (Payload Operations & Integration Center) routing the onboard HRDL (High-Rate Data Link). After about an hour, Dan will turn MPC routing off again. [This is a routine operation which regularly transmits HD onboard video (live or tape playback) to the ground on a daily basis before sleeptime.]

Before his sleeptime, FE-2 will initiate battery charging for the GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging equipment with the FSS hardware for tomorrow’s planned observation session. [The FSS system consists of an image recording module with lens and a spectroradiometer module with an electronics module.]

Also before sleeptime, Ivanishin will prepare the Russian MBI-12 payload and start his 2nd Sonokard 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.]

The crew worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (CDR), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-1, FE-2) and ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-1, FE-2).

The Russian discretionary “time permitting” task list for FE-1 & FE-2 for today suggested more preparation & downlinking of reportages (written text, photos, videos) for the Roskosmos website to promote Russia’s manned space program (max. file size 500 Mb), plus more unloading of Progress 45P with concurrent updates of the IMS.

GHF Checkout: On 12/1, JAXA ground controllers continued the extensive checkout of the GHF (Gradient Heating Furnace) payload on the Kobairo Rack in the Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) which began on 12/1 and is continuing for about 14 days.

Conjunction Advisory: NASA/MCC-H is tracking a conjunction with Object 31894 (another Fengyun 1C satellite debris) with TCA (Time of Closest Approach) tomorrow at ~7:17pm EST. The conjunction is currently classified as Medium Concern, primarily because of the smaller radial miss and larger uncertainties on the object. The latest update has moved the object outside the conjunction notification box, but due to the large uncertainties, NASA continues to gather tracking data on the object. If required, a DAM (Debris Avoidance Maneuver) would have to be performed tomorrow at ~4:59pm, with Go/NoGo decision to be made tonight (~7:47pm).

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) target uplinked for today was Seoul, South Korea (looking right of track for this capital city of more than 10 million people, one of the largest in the world. Greater Seoul, which includes Incheon, has more than 24.5 million inhabitants. ISS had a descending pass over northeastern Asia as it tracked toward Seoul at night. Trying to get mapping shots of the city for the CEO imagery).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 4:55am EST [= epoch])
· Mean altitude – 392.9 km
· Apogee height – 409.9 km
· Perigee height – 376.0 km
· Period -- 92.42 min.
· Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.64 deg
· Eccentricity -- 0.0025044
· Solar Beta Angle -- 26.5 deg (magnitude decreasing)
· Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.58
· Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 53 m
· Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) -- 74,904
· Time in orbit (station) -- 4772 days
· Time in orbit (crews, cum.) -- 4059 days

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
12/21/11 -- Soyuz TMA-03M/29S launch – O.Kononenko (CDR-31)/A.Kuipers/D.Pettit --- 8:16:15am EST (7:16:15pm Baikonur)
12/23/11 -- Soyuz TMA-03M/29S docking (MRM1) --- 10:20am EST
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
01/18/12 -- ISS Reboost (set up phasing for 46P)
01/24/12 -- Progress M-13M/45P undock
01/25/12 -- Progress M-14M/46P launch
01/27/12 -- Progress M-14M/46P docking (DC-1)
02/07/12 -- SpaceX Falcon 9/Dragon --- (target date)
02/14/12 -- Russian EVA
xx/xx/12 -- ATV3 launch readiness
03/16/12-- Soyuz TMA-22/28S undock/landing (End of Increment 30)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
03/30/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/30S launch – G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/K.Volkov --- (Target Date)
04/01/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/30S docking (MRM2) --- (Target Date)
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
TBD -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) w/ERA – launch on Proton (under review)
04/24/12 -- Progress M-14M/46P undock
04/25/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P launch
04/27/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P docking
TBD -- 3R Multipurpose Laboratory Module (MLM) – docking (under review)
05/16/12 -- Soyuz TMA-03M/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/30/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S launch – S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
06/01/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S docking
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
09/12/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/26/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O.Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
09/28/12 – Soyuz TMA-06M/32S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
11/12/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/26/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
11/28/12 – Soyuz TMA-07M/33S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
03/19/13 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
04/02/13 – Soyuz TMA-08M/34S launch – P.Vinogradov (CDR-36)/C.Cassidy/A.Misurkin
04/04/13 – Soyuz TMA-08M/34S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
05/16/13 – Soyuz TMA-07M/33S undock/landing (End of Increment 35)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
05/29/13 – Soyuz TMA-09M/35S launch – M.Suraev (CDR-37)/K.Nyberg/L.Parmitano
05/31/13 – Soyuz TMA-09M/35S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
09/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-08M/34S undock/landing (End of Increment 36)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
09/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-10M/36S launch – M.Hopkins/TBD (CDR-38)/TBD
09/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-10M/36S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
11/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-09M/35S undock/landing (End of Increment 37)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
11/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-11M/37S launch – K.Wakata (CDR-39)/R.Mastracchio/TBD
11/xx/13 – Soyuz TMA-11M/37S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
03/xx/14 – Soyuz TMA-10M/36S undock/landing (End of Increment 38)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------

A NOTE OF SADNESS: This morning in Moscow, legendary Russian rocket man Boris Yefseyevich Chertok passed away, 77 days before reaching the age of 100 years (Mar ch 1, 2012). A much-honored Hero of Socialist Labor and Laureate of Lenin and State prizes, Dr. Chertok, an Academician of the Russian Academy of Science (RAN), began his career as an electrician in 1930 at an aviation factory in Fili near Moscow. Thirty years later, he was deputy to the founding figure of the Soviet space program, the mysterious “glavnyi konstruktor” (Chief Designer) Sergey Pavlovich Korolev. Chertok’s name, too, remained a state secret throughout most of his career. When he did occasionally write for the public, he used the pseudonym “Boris Yevseyev”. Chertok’s career of ~eighty years and the many successes and failures of the Soviet space program constitute the core of his celebrated four-volume memoirs “Rakety i liudi”, which was published by NASA’s History Office and SOMD (Space Operations Mission Directorate) in an outstanding English version, “Rockets and People”. Chertok is considered one of the founders of Cosmonautics who in his later years became a teacher, both in science and spirit, also a historian, philosopher and “invisible cosmonaut who overcame space and time” (RSC-E). He had become a good friend of NASA, a warm-hearted and much respected man of awesome experience in the world of rocket engineering and space exploration, and of great worldly wisdom. He will be sorely missed.