Text Size

December 22, 2011
ISS On-Orbit Status 12/22/11

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

  • Soyuz TMA-03M/29S is in Day 2 of its flight to ISS, with docking scheduled tomorrow morning at ~10:23am EST at the MRM1 Rassvet module, delivering Oleg Kononenko (Russia, Soyuz 29S CDR, ISS-30/31 Flight Engineer, ISS-31 CDR), Don Pettit (USA, ISS-30/31 FE) and Andre Kuipers (ESA, ISS-30/31 FE) for a stay of 147 days. [This is the 118thmission to the ISS. With the first launch of the FGB “Zarya” module on a Proton-K (1A/R) on 11/20/1998, there have been a total of 36 US missions, 78 Russian missions (+ 1 failed), 2 European missions (ATV-1, ATV-2) and 2 Japanese missions (HTV1, HTV2). It is also the 2nd post-Shuttle manned launch.<<<

  • Sleep Cycle: To accommodate the arrival of 29S, the ISS crew is undergoing a sleep shift adjustment, as follows (EST) –
12/22 (today, normal): Wake – 1:00am; Sleep – 4:30pm;
12/23 (tomorrow): Wake – 4:30am (instead of 1:00am); Docking – 10:23am; Sleep – 8:00pm;
12/24 (Saturday): Wake – 4:30am; Sleep – 4:30pm;
12/25 (Sunday): Wake – 1:00am; Sleep – 4:30pm (back to normal).

After wakeup, FE-2 Anatoly Ivanishin performed the routine inspection of the SM (Service Module) PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection.

FE-1 Shkaplerov terminated his 3rd 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.]

At wake-up, CDR Burbank completed his 9th 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.]

Afterwards, Burbank unstowed the KUBIK-3 refrigerator and set it up in COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) in front of the EDR (European Drawer Rack) in preparation for the ROALD2 (ROle of Apoptosis in Lymphocyte Depression 2) experiment. [Preparations included switching on temperature and centrifuge control on KUBIK 3 & KUBIK 6 and performing a short check-out. The two KUBIKs were then preheated +37°C for ROALD2, and their centrifuges were switched on for a functional check. Later, Dan checked the actual temperature and centrifuge speed in order to verify that the KUBIKs are running properly (the experiment will run only in KUBIK-3; KUBIK-6 is powered as back-up in case of problems with KUBIK-3). Background: ROALD2, a cell-biology study of the human immune system, was preceded by ROALD1 in 2008 which showed that the programmed cell death (Apoptosis) rate of human immune cells is enhanced in microgravity. This could be responsible for the immune system impairment observed in micro-G. Objective of ROALD2 is to investigate the role of the endocannabinoid Anandamide (polyunsaturated fatty acid) in the regulation of immune processes in human lymphocytes in micro-G. Anandamide is a signal for the cells to make a choice between life and death. Therefore, it potentially contributes to the immune deficiency observed in Space. Benefit will be better understanding of the role of Anandamide in the immune system. Outcome could help to find countermeasures against the influence of micro-G, especially for long term missions.]

With its KPT-2 Piren pyro-endoscope battery recharged in the morning, Shkaplerov & Ivanishin spent another ~2 hrs with the KPT-2 payload with its BAR science instruments suite, checking out micro conditions of the SM surface in areas with identified signs of microflora growth on the pressurized shell surface and measuring local temperatures with the Piren-V.[Problem area monitoring is necessary to predict shell micro-destruction rate and to develop measures to extend station life. Data were copied to the RSE1 laptop for downlink to Earth via OCA, with photographs, and the activities were supported by ground specialist tagup as required. Objective of the Russian KPT-2/BAR science payload is to measure environmental parameters (temperature, humidity, air flow rate) and module shell surface temperatures behind RS (Russian Segment) panels and other areas susceptible to possible micro-destruction (corrosion), before and after insolation (day vs. night).Piren-V is a video-endoscope with pyrosensor, part of the methods & means being used on ISS for detecting tiny leaks in ISS modules which could lead to cabin depressurization. Besides KPT-2 Piren-V, 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-1) to determine environmental data in specific locations and at specific times. Activities include documentary photography with the NIKON D2X camera and flash.]

Continuing his troubleshooting of the SEP (Electric Power System/EPS) power bus controller on channel B (uncommanded deactivation) begun on 12/19, Shkaplerov performed continuity checks (resistance measurements) with the MMTs-01 Multimeter on the BSK-7,5 power-switching device (blok silovoiy kommutatsii) circuits which comprise the SEP power bus controller, channel B. The activity was supported by ground specialist tagup.

Afterwards, Anton completed the periodic (~monthly) maintenance on the temporarily deactivated Russian IK0501 GA (Gas Analyzer) of the SOGS Pressure Control & Atmospheric Monitoring System behind SM panel 449 by replacing its CO2 filter assembly (BF) with a new spare, #127 (done last: 11/10). The old unit was discarded on Progress 45P and the IMS (Inventory Management System) updated. [IK0501 is an automated system for measuring CO2, O2, and H2O in the air, as well as the flow rate of the gas being analyzed.]

Next, FE-1 did the periodic checkout & performance verification of IP-1 airflow sensors in the various RS (Russian Segment) hatchways, a prudent preparation for the imminent doubling of the station crew size. [Inspected IP-1s are in the passagewaysPrK (SM Transfer Tunnel)–RO (SM Working Compartment), PkhO (SM Transfer Compartment)–RO, PkhO–DC1, PkhO–FGBPGO, PkhO-MRM2, FGB GA-MRM1, FGB PGO–FGB GA, and FGB GA–Node-1.]

Anton also conducted the regular (weekly) 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).

CDR Burbank verified the stowage location of the ESEM 1 (Exchangeable Standard Electronic Module 1) of the MSG (Microgravity Science Glovebox) for its upcoming use to recover MSG rack functionality for science.

Working on the new 45P-delivered CSA-CP (Compound Specific Analyzer-Combustion Product) units #1042, #1044, #1050, #1051, Dan changed out their battery packs and reset (updated) their internal clocks and data loggers (in T61p laptop).

In Node-3, the CDR later removed the ARFTA (Advanced Recycle Filter Tank Assembly), drained it with the Russian Kompressor-M into an EDV-U container, performed a leak check, cleaned it and replaced it in WRS-2. [The recycle tank was then to be filled via the refill method using the UPA (Urine Processor Assembly) Quick Disconnect depress hose which was later removed again, along with the tank’s vent adapter.]

Anatoly Ivanishin completed the periodic transfer of U.S. condensate water from CWCs (Contingency Water Containers, #1030 w/22 L, #1051 w/44 L) to the RS for the periodic (about twice a month) replenishing of the Elektron’s water supply for electrolysis, filling the designated KOV EDV container. Once filled, the EDV was to be connected to the BPK transfer pump for processing through the BKO water purification (multifiltration) unit. [The 40-minute procedure is specially designed to prevent air bubbles larger than ~10 mm from getting into the BZh Liquid Unit where they could cause Elektron shutdown.]

FE-2 also 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.]

Working from the Russian discretionary “time permitting” task list, FE-1 took care of the daily IMS 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).

Shkaplerov recharged the FSS Photospectrograph battery and then used the Russian GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program with FSS science hardware at SM window #9 during a one-hour segment, taking pictures of targets along the flight track and focusing on the mountain range of the Andes, Lake Titicaca, characteristics of natural areas (lakes, rivers, forests, etc.), the Amazon River, the Rio Negra River and the coastal zone & waters of the Atlantic Ocean. [The FSS(Fotospektralnaya sistema) consists of an image recording module with lens and a spectroradiometer module with an electronics module. FSS includes the ME Electronics Module & MRI Image Recording Module.]

Ivanishin set up the Russian DZZ-12 RUSALKA (“Mermaid”) hardware at SM window #9 for another sun-glint observation session, using the bracket-mounted spectrometer (without use of the TIUS three-stage rate sensor) for unattended ops, synchronized with the coaxially mounted NIKON D2X camera for taking snapshots, and later downloaded the data to laptop RS1 for subsequent downlink via OCA. Photography began at ~6:05am EST and was programmed to run about 30 minutes. [RUSALKA is a micro spectrometer for collecting detailed information on observed spectral radiance in the near IR (Infrared) waveband for measurement of greenhouse gas concentrations in the Earth atmosphere.]

Afterwards, Anatoly conducted the periodic service of the RS radiation payload suite “Matryoshka-R” (RBO-3-2), collecting eight Bubble dosimeters (A21, A22, A27, A28, A33, A34, A35, A36) to read their recorded radiation traces in a special Reader; afterwards, the dosimeters were initialized for new measurements and redeployed. [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 of the upcoming EPIC (Enhanced Processor & Integrated Communications) card testing and installation in the MDM (Multiplexer/Demultiplexer) computers, Dan Burbank retrieved and pre-gathered required hardware, mostly Ethernet cables and some bags. Readying necessary tools will be done later. [The hardware was temporarily placed inside an empty JSB (Jettison Stowage Bag) and stowed at the Node-2 P4 MWA (Maintenance Work Area).]

After the installation of the ATV PCE (Automated Transfer Vehicle / Proximity Communications Equipment; Russian: MBRL) equipment started on 12/19, Shkaplerov today tested the MBRL, AFU Antenna Feeder Unit, and ATV Hand Controller on the PU Control Panel, with ground specialist tagup. [Yesterday’s connection tests were nominal except for the CPD 1 (Communication Processor Deformatter 1) inside the PCE Avionics Box, which failed the self-communication test with the SMTVM (Terminal Computer). The test was repeated with the same result. CPD is a 1553 coder/decoder interface between the PCE and the TVM. Ground teams are assessing the data from these tests to recommend a forward plan. The PCE testing is in preparation for the ground fueling of the ATV3 tanks, which occurs approximately two and a half months prior to ATV3 launch. ATV3 is scheduled to launch on 3/9/2012. Tanking depends on functioning onboard MBRL systems.]

In preparation for tomorrow’s arrival of Soyuz 29S, FE-1 & FE-2 jointly reviewed procedures for covering the “Transfer Hatch Opening” and “Expedition 30 Arrival” segments with Sony HVR-Z1J HDV camcorders, to be downlinked on US Ku-band as MPEG2 streaming video for subsequent relay from Houston to Moscow via ESA Gateway. The cameras are to be installed and configured in SM and MRM1 Rassvet. [Procedures were discussed in detail with ground specialist.]

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 activity was cancelled yesterday. [This is a routine operation which regularly transmits HD onboard video (live or tape playback) to the ground on a daily basis before sleeptime.]

At ~8:50am EST, Burbank conducted his regular IMS stowage conference with Houston stowage specialists.

At ~10:05am, the CDR supported a PAO TV downlink, responding to an interview with WDIV-TV, Detroit, MI (Paul Gross).

At ~1:55pm, the crew held their regular weekly tagup with the Lead Flight Director at JSC/MCC-H.

The crew worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-1, FE-2), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (CDR, FE-1, FE-2), and T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR).

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).

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) target uplinked for today was Kampala, Uganda (the Ugandan capital city of nearly 1.7 million is located in the south central part of the country near the north shore of Lake Victoria. ISS had an early afternoon pass today with partly cloudy weather expected as it approached from the SW. At this time, as the crew neared Lake Victoria, they were to look left of track for this target and try for views of the entire city within a single frame).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 5:09am EST [= epoch])
· Mean altitude – 392.1 km
· Apogee height – 408.7 km
· Perigee height – 375.5 km
· Period -- 92.40 min.
· Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.64 deg
· Eccentricity -- 0.0024492
· Solar Beta Angle -- 3.1 deg (magnitude decreasing)
· Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.58
· Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 147 m
· Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) -- 75,029
· Time in orbit (station) -- 4780 days
· Time in orbit (crews, cum.) -- 4067 days

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
12/23/11 -- Soyuz TMA-03M/29S docking (MRM1) --- 10:23am 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 launch --- (target date)
02/10/12 -- SpaceX Falcon 9/Dragon berthing --- (target date)
02/14/12 -- Russian EVA
02/23/12 -- SpaceX Falcon 9/Dragon unberth --- (target date)
03/09/12 -- ATV3 launch --- (target date)
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-------------