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March 29, 2012
ISS On-Orbit Status 03/29/12

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

ATV-3 "Edoardo Amaldi" docked successfully at the SM (Service Module) aft port last night at 6:31:17pm EDT. ATV hooks were closed at 6:37:12pm, SM hooks at 6:38:57pm. Congratulations, ESA, what a smooth touch! [All ATV systems performed nominally during the docking. The rendezvous consisted of 14 maneuvers, all of which were reported to be nominal. Final approach was at a relative velocity of 5 cm/s and with an accuracy of better than 10 cm. The cargo transport is delivering about 160 cargo bags of different sizes with 2,200 kg of dry cargo, including food, clothes and equipment; 3,150 kg of ISS reboost/attitude control propellants, 860 kg of ISS refuel propellant (306 kg of fuel, 554 kg of oxidizer) to be transferred, and 100 kg gaseous oxygen. Payload includes 8 racks with 1.25 m3 each. Total cargo upload capacity is 6595 kg. It will take more than 80 hrs to remove all delivered equipment and restow the cargo carrier with garbage for disposal.]

In preparation for the docking, the crew yesterday �C
  • Powered down the amateur/ham radio equipment in the SM & COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory) to prevent RF interference with the cargo ship,
  • Configured the SM STTS communications panel 2 for the docking, taking out the RSA-2 channel to prevent possible echo/feedback,
  • Closed the shutters of the US Lab, Node-3/Cupola and Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) to protect them against thruster effluents,
  • Activated & tested the Ku-band video “scheme” for transferring & downlinking streaming video via the MPEG-2 (Moving Pictures Expert Group 2) encoder, after André had activated the A31p laptop in the FGB for the video conversion to US NTSC format,
  • Configured the PCE (Proximity Communications Equipment; Russian: MBRL) in the SM for the docking [involving the MBRL AFU (Antenna Feeder Unit) and ATV PU Hand Controller],
  • Monitored the approach & docking, and
  • Reconfigured the SM STTS comm panels for nominal stage operations

Crew wakeup this morning was shifted 4 hrs to the right to compensate for last night late sleeptime: Wake 6:00am, sleep 5:30pm (returning to normal).

Upon wakeup, CDR Dan Burbank, FE-5 André Kuipers & FE-6 Don Pettit each completed another post-sleep session of the Reaction Self-Test (Psychomotor Vigilance Self-Test on the ISS) protocol, the 37th for Dan, the 31st for André & Don. [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.]

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

Afterwards, Shkaplerov worked several hours at SM panels 225 & 226 to disassemble & remove the electronic PCE (Proximity Communications Equipment; Russian: MBRL) used for the ATV-3 rendezvous & docking. [After preparing the stowage location for the PCE gear in the FGB, Anton deinstalled the PCE Z0000 Box, BUAP Antenna Switch Control Unit and ATV PU (Control Panel) in the SM plus cabling, capping all connectors and stowing the electronics in the FGB behind panels 225 & 226, the cables behind panels 129 & 225.]

FE-6 Pettit completed Part 3 of the periodic acoustic measurement protocol, downloading the recorded data from the 3 acoustic dosimeters from the SMK (Sound Measurement Kit) deployed yesterday for static measurements in the station to a T61p laptop, then stowing the recorders. [Measurement locations: SM, FGB, Node-1.]

In COL, CDR Burbank unstowed and set up the PPFS (Portable Pulmonary Function System) hardware with power, data, front panel, and gas connections, including MBS (Mixing Bag System) for his 5th session with VO2max (Evaluation of Maximal Oxygen Uptake & Submaximal Estimates of VO2max before, during and after long-duration space station missions), scheduled tomorrow. [The VO2max assessment 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 consists of 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.]

Afterwards, Dan serviced the DECLIC (Device for the Study of Critical Liquids & Crystallization) experiment in ER4 (EXPRESS Rack 4) by replacing the RHDD (Removable Hard Disk Drive) #002 in the DECLIC ELL (Electronics Locker) with a new one (#003). [The French (CNES)/NASA-sponsored DECLIC is a multi-user facility to investigate low & high temperature critical fluids behavior, chemical reactivity in supercritical water, directional solidification of transparent alloys, and more generally transparent media under micro-gravity environment. DECLIC uses the standard infrastructure offered by the US ER4 (EXPRESS Rack 4) in the Kibo JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) module, with standard lockers. Typical experiments for DECLIC include fluids (CO2, SF6) close to their near ambient critical point engineered in a dedicated insert (ALI), directional solidification of transparent materials (succinonitrile alloy) engineered in a dedicated insert (DSI), high temperature, and high pressure critical fluids (H2O, NH3, etc.) engineered in the dedicated HTI insert. DECLIC is designed for remote science control, commonly called "Telescience". Operation capabilities offer scientists the possibility to remotely visualize and modify their selected experiment conditions in the ISS from User Home Base through the CADMOS User Support & Operation Centre.]

In preparation for hatch opening, FE-2 Ivanishin charged the MO-21 EKOSFERA battery and later activated the Kriogem-03 temperature-controlled container at +37 deg in preparation for receiving the MO-21 microbial samples to be collected in the ATV.

Also for the opening, FE-5 Kuipers started another sampling run with the AQM (Air Quality Monitor), deactivating the system ~5 hrs later. [Consisting of the EHS GC/DMS (Environmental Health Systems Gas Chromatograph / Differential Mobility Spectrometer), the system is controlled with “Sionex” expert software from the SSC (Station Support Computer)-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.]

After reviewing an OBT (Onboard Training) drill covering ATV APO (Attached Phase Operations) procedures to refresh their proficiency, Kononenko & Kuipers after their lunch break �C
Conducted the one-hour leak check on the SM PrK (Transfer Tunnel)/ATV vestibule,
Opened the PrK-SU (Vestibule) transfer hatch on TsUP-Moscow Go,
Set up the POTOK Air Purification Unit of the SOGS Air Revitalization Subsystem in the PrK and powered it up,
Opened the ATV transfer hatch on TsUP-Moscow Go, and
Installed the BZV quick release screw clamps of the SSVP docking mechanism, and ingressed ATV (wearing dust respirator & vacuum cleaner).
After the hatch opening, Ivanishin sampled the air with the Russian AK-1M and Draeger IPD-CO sampling equipment.

Time-sequenced with Anton’s AK-1M sampling, André used the US GSC (Grab Sample Container) equipment to collect air samples in the center of the ATV.

Before powering up the POTOK, Kononenko used the standard ECOSFERA equipment to conduct a microbial air sampling run for the MedOps SZM-MO-21 experiment, taking samples from ATV cabin surfaces. The Petri dishes with the samples were then stowed in the KRIOGEM-03 thermostatic container at +37 deg. [The equipment, consisting of an air sampler set, a charger and power supply unit, provides samples to help determine microbial contamination of the ISS atmosphere, specifically the total bacterial and fungal microflora counts and microflora composition according to morphologic criteria of microorganism colonies. The Ecosphere battery can support 10 air samples on one charge.]

Oleg then installed & started the Russian POTOK air cleaner to scrub the ATV atmosphere for several hours (~1:30pm �C 6:15pm).

The CDR powered up the amateur/ham stations in SM and COL.

At ~11:50am, Dan Burbank concluded his 4th (FD135) ICV Ambulatory Monitoring session, doffing the two Actiwatches and HM2 (Holter Monitor 2) about 24 hrs after the end of yesterday’s “midpoint” activity (~10:00am), then powered on the laptop and downloaded the data from the two Actiwatch Spectrums, copied the data from the 2 HM2 HiFi CF Cards to the HRF PC and downloaded Cardiopres data. [For the ICV Ambulatory Monitoring session, during the first 24 hrs (while all devices are worn), ten minutes of quiet, resting breathing are timelined to collect data for a specific analysis. The nominal exercise includes at least 10 minutes at a heart rate ≥120 bpm (beats per minute). After 24 hrs, the Cardiopres/BP is doffed and the HM2 HiFi CF Card and AA Battery are changed out to allow continuation of the session for another 24 hours, with the Makita batteries switched as required. 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.]

Later, the CDR worked in the COL on the EMCS TCS (European Modular Cultivation System / Thermal Control System), exchanging the TCS FM004 (Fluid Module 4) sponge on the right side of the holding structure. [To gain access, the SAMS-II (Space Acceleration Measurement System 2) sensor was temporarily removed and later reinstalled.]

CDR Burbank conducted his 3rd session with the U.S. HMS VIS (Health Maintenance Systems / Visual Acuity) testing program which uses an eye chart for both far & near visual acuity and an eye questionnaire (DCT/Data Collection Tool), to be filled out with test data and downloaded on a laptop for ground access.

Don Pettit had to defer his 2nd VIS session to a later date due to lack of time.

Anatoly Ivanishin completed 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.]

Afterwards, Ivanishin downloaded the new batch of structural dynamics measurements of the IMU-Ts microaccelerometer of the ATV docking, for the running experiment TEKh-22 “Identifikatsiya” (Identification) in MRM1 (Mini Research Module 1) Rassvet to the RSE1 A31p laptop for subsequent downlink to the ground via OCA. [IMU-Ts is a part of the MRM1 SBI onboard measurement system, installed in PGO behind panel 104.]

Anatoly also conducted the regular (weekly) inspection of the replaceable half-coupling of the 4GB4 hydraulic unit of cooling loop KOB-2, checking for coolant fluid hermeticity (leak-tightness).

Oleg took care of the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance as part of the Russian discretionary “time permitting” task list, 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).

Continuing troubleshooting on the Kobairo rack in the Kibo JPM, FE-6 Pettit configured the Scopemeter instrument, the G1 video camcorder and the GHF CE (Gradient Heating Furnace Control Equipment) for voltage measurements. [The NiCad (Nickel Cadmium) battery pack of the Scopemeter was replaced with four new C-Cell batteries (since the compatibility of the Scopemeter with UOP/Utility Outlet Panel power has not been established yet).]

Kuipers retrieved a CD (compact disk) with Cycle 13 software upgrade and 2 preconditioned T61p laptops from stowage and stowed them temporarily in COL (loc. D4).

André also conducted the weekly 10-min. CWC (Collapsible Water Container) inventory as part of the on-going WRM (Water Recovery & Management) assessment of onboard water supplies. Updated “cue cards” based on the crew’s water calldowns are sent up every other week for recording changes. [The current card (30-0008P) lists 30 CWCs (383.65 L total) for the five types of water identified on board: 1. Silver technical water (4 CWCs with 135.3 L, for Elektron electrolysis, plus 1 empty bag, all containing Wautersia bacteria; 2. Condensate water (3 CWCs with 14.0 L, plus 4 empty bags); 3. Iodinated water (15 CWCs with 195.05 L; 4. Waste water (1 bag with 10.6 L EMU waste water); and 5. Special fluid (1 CWC with 20.2 L, hose/pump flush). Also one leaky CWC (#1024) with 8.5L). Other CWCs are stowed behind racks and are currently not being tracked due to unchanging contents. Wautersia bacteria are typical water-borne microorganisms that have been seen previously in ISS water sources. These isolates pose no threat to human health.]

At ~1:55pm EDT, Dan started the MPC (Multi-Protocol Converter) to downlink playback video of ATV approach and docking activities. POIC (Payload Operations Integration Center) routed the on-board HRDL system.

Burbank & Pettit had another time slot reserved for making entries in their electronic Journals on the personal SSC. [Required are three journaling sessions per week.]

Before sleeptime, FE-2 will initiate battery charging for the Russian GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program with FSS science hardware. [The FSS system 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.]

The crew worked out with their regular 2-hr physical exercise protocol on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-6), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-4), ARED advanced resistive exerciser (FE-1, FE-2), T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR, FE-5), and VELO ergometer bike with load trainer (FE-2, FE-4). [FE-6 is on the special experimental PRINT protocol which diverts from the regular 2.5 hrs per day exercise regime and introduces special daily sessions, followed by a USND (Ultrasound) leg muscle self scan in COL. Today’s exercise called for CEVIS. If any day is not completed, Don picks up where he left off, i.e., he would be finishing out the week with his last day of exercise on his off day.]

Tasks listed for Shkaplerov, Kononenko & Ivanishin on the Russian discretionary “time permitting” job for today were �C
  • A ~30-min. run of the GFI-8 "Uragan" (hurricane) earth-imaging program with the NIKON D3X digital camera with Sigma AF 300-800mm telelens, focusing on the volcanoes Santa Maria, Fuego, San Cristobal, Arenal, Poas, Galeras, Reventador, Tanguraua, Sangay & Hudson, and the glaciers of Patagonia;
  • A ~30-min. session for Russia's EKON Environmental Safety Agency, making observations and taking KPT-3 aerial photography of environmental conditions on Earth using the NIKON D3X camera with the RSK-1 laptop, and
  • 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).

Conjunction Update: Flight controllers are monitoring a conjunction between the ISS and the TRMM (Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission) satellite (Object 25063), an active spacecraft, controlled and monitored by NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. GSFC TRMM & Conjunction assessment team are also aware of and monitoring the conjunction which has a TCA (Time of Closest Approach) on 3/30 at 2:12am EDT. The ATV docking did not perturb the ISS orbit enough to cause a change in the low risk classification of this conjunction; however, a second low concern TCA was identified on the next rev. The Pc calculation for both conjunctions is 0. Debris avoidance planning will not be required for either close approach. [Historical data for ISS dockings: Our 2 previous ATV dockings have imparted very small disturbances on the ISS, on the order of -20 meters of mean altitude change. Other similar, recent, Russian vehicle dockings to the Aft ISS port also have an average change of -20 meters of mean altitude (3 events). Should the perturbations from the ATV docking somehow increase the concern level of the conjunction, NASA will decide whether it makes more sense to maneuver ISS or the TRMM satellite.]

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) targets uplinked for today were Belmopan, Belize (World Capitals Collection Site: This small, relatively new capital city of just over 20,000 is located near the center of the country and about 50 miles inland. ISS had a late morning pass in fair weather. As it approached from the NW at this time, the crew was to look carefully for this urban area left of track), and Managua, Nicaragua (World Capitals Collection Site: On this late morning pass ISS approached the coast of Nicaragua from the NW in fair weather. Looking nadir for this capital city of nearly 2 million located on the south shore of Lake Managua).

ISS Orbit (as of this morning, 9:46am EDT [= epoch])
Mean altitude �C 388.4 km
Apogee height �C 398.8 km
Perigee height �C 378.0 km
Period -- 92.32 min.
Inclination (to Equator) -- 51.64 deg
Eccentricity -- 0.0015353
Solar Beta Angle -- 18.1 deg (magnitude increasing)
Orbits per 24-hr. day -- 15.60
Mean altitude loss in the last 24 hours -- 106 m
Revolutions since FGB/Zarya launch (Nov. 98) -- 76,560
Time in orbit (station) -- 4878 days
Time in orbit (crews, cum.) -- 4165 days

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
04/19/12 -- Progress M-14M/46P undock
04/20/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P launch
04/22/12 -- Progress M-15M/47P docking
04/27/12 -- Soyuz TMA-22/28S undock/landing (End of Increment 30)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
04/30/12 -- SpaceX Dragon launch (12:22pm EDT; target date)
05/15/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/30S launch �C G.Padalka (CDR-32)/J.Acaba/S.Revin
05/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/30S docking (MRM2)
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
07/01/12 -- Soyuz TMA-03M/29S undock/landing (End of Increment 31)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
07/15/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S launch �C S.Williams (CDR-33)/Y.Malenchenko/A.Hoshide
07/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S docking
07/20/12 -- HTV3 launch (~10:18pm EDT)
07/31/12 -- Progress M16M/48P launch
08/02/12 -- Progress M16M/48P docking
--------------Six-crew operations----------------
09/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-04M/30S undock/landing (End of Increment 32)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
10/15/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S launch �C K.Ford (CDR-34)/O.Novitskiy/E.Tarelkin
10/17/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
11/01/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P launch
11/03/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P docking
11/12/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
12/05/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S launch �C C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/07/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S docking
--------------Six-crew operations-------------
12/26/12 -- Progress M-18M/50P launch
12/28/12 -- Progress M-18M/50P docking
03/19/13 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
--------------Three-crew operations-------------
04/02/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S launch �C 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 �C 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 �C 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 �C 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-------------