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October 16, 2012
ISS On-Orbit Status 10/16/12

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

After wakeup, FE-4 Malenchenko performed the routine inspection of the SM (Service Module) PSS Caution & Warning panel as part of regular Daily Morning Inspection.

Yuri also completed the daily reboot of the Russian RSS1 & RSS2 laptops.

CDR Williams supported POIC (Payload Operations & Integration Center)/Huntsville by manually opening the EMCS (European Modular Cultivation System) gas valves. Tonight, before sleeptime, she will close them again. [This had to be done within 24 hrs prior to the start of the EMCS experiment run if the EMCS power-up is performed via ground commanding. EMCS holding structure purge, if required prior to the EMCS experiment run, is considered to be part of the experiment run.]

Later, Suni re-installed the three PaRIS (Passive Rack Isolation System) lock-down alignment guides on the CIR (Combustion Integrated Rack) at Lab starboard bay S3, engaged the snubber pins and locked safety pins to protect its ARIS (Active Rack Isolation System) from external loading (dynamic disturbances).

Afterwards, the CDR used the SLM (Sound Level Meter) to conduct the periodic acoustic survey of several ISS modules, taking a total of 27 measurements, then transferring the data for downlink. [General background noise measurements were taken in the US Lab (10), Node-2 (10), Dragon (6), Dragon/Node-2 Vestibule (1).]

With the RS (Russian Segment) STTS comm system configured for crew presence in the FGB, Yuri Malenchenko conducted leak checking procedures on the KVD Pressure Equalization Valve (PEV) between the FGB PGO (Instrumentation Cargo Compartment) and the SU Vestibule to the SM, as well as the KVD valve between the MRM2 (Poisk) module and the SM SU from PkhO (SM Transfer Compartment), with assistance by Aki Hoshide. [The leak checks between the various compartments with hatches closed and open required removal of the IP-1 and air ducts between the PkhO & MRM2 and FGB & SM. Afterwards, the ventilation was reconfigured: air ducts re-installed and VVPkhO fan in SM and V3 fan in MRM2 activated.]

FE-4 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, 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.]

Later, Malenchenko took care of the daily IMS (Inventory Management System) maintenance, working from 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).

Suni Williams completed the periodic manual fill of the WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment) EDV-SV (condensate) flush water tank from the PWB (Potable Water Bus) for about 23 min, a partial fill during which WHC was not available.

Suni also reconfigured the WRS (Water Recovery System) for collecting condensate in the WPA WWT (Water Processor Assembly Waste Water Tank). Later, the CDR set up WHC (Waste & Hygiene Compartment) to work with UPA (Urine Processor Assembly) rather than with an EDV-U container.

FE-6 Hoshide conducted the regular (approx. weekly) WRS (Water Recovery System) sampling in Node-3 using the TOCA, after first initializing the software and priming (filling) the TOCA water sample hose. [After the approximately 2 hr TOCA analysis, results were transferred to the SSC-5 (Station Support Computer 5) laptop via USB drive for downlink, and the data were also logged.]

Akihiko also changed out the TOCA WWB (Waste Water Bag), replacing it with a fresh one.

FE-4 Malenchenko completed his 3rd OOHA (On-Orbit Hearing Assessment) test, a 30-minute NASA environmental health systems examination to assess the efficacy of acoustic countermeasures and monitor crew hearing status on-orbit, using a special software application on the SSC (Station Support Computer) laptop. [The self-administered OOHA test is a variation of conventional audiometric testing, in which the crewmember determines minimum audibility for tones, over a wide range of frequencies (0.25-10 kHz) and sound pressure levels, in each ear. While wearing custom-made Prophonics earphones and Bose active noise reduction headsets, the crewmember uses special EarQ software on the SSC to determine the lowest sound pressure level at which the tone can still be heard. The first on-orbit test is required not later than about Flight Day 14 for each new Expedition and is then generally performed once per 45 days thereafter. Results are then reviewed by medical personnel and compared to pre-flight OOHA data and also to previous on-orbit OOHA results. Note: There have been temporary shifts in hearing sensitivity documented on some crewmembers, most of which have recovered to pre-mission levels.]

After familiarizing himself with procedures for the JAXA MICB (MICROBE-3) experiment in the Kibo lab, Aki took photographs of the specified sampling locations and then performed microbial White Tube sampling in the JPM (JEM Pressurized Module) with wet wipes and sampling sheets, followed by cleaning up sampling locations.

Suni & Aki joined up for a 90-min review of the planned EVA-20, using an uplinked briefing package and new POC DOUG (Portable Onboard Computers Dynamic Onboard Ubiquitous Graphics) software.

Later, Williams closed the protective shutters of the Cupola windows for the duration of ground-commanded MSS (Mobile Service System) maneuvers to move the SSRMS (Space Station Remote Maneuvering System) to within 10 ft of the Cupola and then, with the shutters opened briefly, photographed the robotarm’s LEE (Latching End Effector).

In the A/L, Suni terminated the regeneration of the first batch of METOX (Metal Oxide) carbon dioxide removal canisters, then initiated the “bake-out” of the 2nd batch (#0013, #0015).

The CDR also stowed any DCBs (Double Coldbags) and/or IceBricks that were temporarily stowed after the recent sample transfer to the Dragon.

For an uplinked listing of CWC-Is (Contingency Water Containers-Iodine), Williams provided her estimates of the water quantity remaining in each.

Yuri took his 2nd periodic Russian PZE-MO-3 test for physical fitness evaluation, spending ~90 min on the TVIS treadmill in unmotorized (manual control) mode and wearing the Kardiokassette KK-2000 belt with three chest electrodes. [The fitness test, controlled from the RSE-Med laptop, yields ECG (electrocardiogram) readings to the KK-2000 data storage device, later downlinked via the Regul (BSR-TM) payload telemetry channel. Before the run, the KK-2000 was synchronized with the computer date/time readings. For the ECG, the crewmember rests for 5 min., then works out on the treadmill, first walking 3 min. up to 3.5 km/h, then running at a slow pace of 5-6 km/h for 2 min, at moderate pace of 6.5 km/h for 2 min, followed by the maximum pace not exceeding 10 km/h for 1 min, then walking again at gradually decreasing pace to 3.5 km/h].

With its battery freshly charged since this morning, Yuri configured the GFI-1 “Relaksatsiya” (Relaxation) Earth Observation experiment at SM window #9, installed yesterday, for operation, and then used it to take more spectral and photographic imagery of Earth’s surface and atmosphere under ground commanding. Later, the CDR closed out the experiment and dumped the data from Laptop 3 via the RSS1 terminal. [By means of the GFI-1 UFKFialka-MV-Kosmos” ultraviolet camera, SP spectrometer and SONY HVR-Z7 HD (High Definition) camcorder, the experiment observes the Earth atmosphere and surface from window #9, with spectrometer measurements controlled from Laptop 3. “Relaxation”, in Physics, is the transition of an atom or molecule from a higher energy level to a lower one, emitting radiative energy in the process as equilibrium is achieved.]

Before sleeptime, Aki Hoshide starts his 4th session with the ESA/German experiment CRHYT (Circadian Rhythms), instrumenting himself with the Thermolab Double Sensors, mounting the Thermolab Control Unit in the belt, then connecting & powering on the control unit for the next 36 hours during which the equipment is worn. For this session he was asked to count the cups of coffee he drank starting this morning at 2:00am EDT until CRHYT de-instrumentation in 36 hrs, on Thursday, 10/18. [The main objective of the experiment is to get a better basic understanding of any alterations in circadian rhythms in humans during long-term space flights. Such knowledge will not only provide important insights into the adaptations of the human autonomic nervous system in space over time, but also has significant practical implications by helping to improve physical exercise, rest- and work shifts as well as fostering adequate workplace illumination in the sense of occupational healthcare in future space missions. The Circadian Rhythms experiment is performed over 3 days (from Day 1 to Day 3) and involves: Instrumentation (Day 1); 36-hrs continuous measurement (Day 1 + 2 + 3), and De-instrumentation (Day 3). On-orbit measurements are planned for FD 15, FD30 and then at 30 day intervals until return. During day 1, the instrumentation is performed late in the afternoon. This consists of donning the Thermolab Double Sensors at the forehead and sternum positions. By powering on the Thermolab Control Unit the 36 hours measurement is started. During day 2, the Thermolab Control Unit will measure throughout the day. No interaction is required other than confirming the Thermolab Control Unit is measuring by checking the display from time to time.]

Aki Hoshide installed five REMs (Radiation Environment Monitors) on five SSC (Station Support Computers) and started the REM software. [REM IDs: #1003 on SSC4 in Node-1, #1004 on SSC13 in US Lab, #1005 on SSC16 in US Lab, #1007 on SSC7 in COL (Columbus Orbital Laboratory), #1009 on SSC15 on JPM (JEM Pressurized Module).]

FE-6 also changed out the battery in the onboard Draeger AMK CMS (Ammonia Measurement Kit Chip Measurement System). [CMS batteries need to be replaced every 6 months to prevent corrosion from occurring.]

Suni had a time/placeholder reserved for making entries in her electronic Journal on the personal SSC. [Required are three journaling sessions per week.]

During ISS overflight of a RGS (Russian Ground Station) at 10:59am-11:24am EDT, Yuri ran a periodic test of the RS UKV/S-band radio system.

Before sleeptime, Malenchenko initiates charging the battery of the TEKh-62 ALBEDO which uses the FSS Photo Spectrum System at an SM window.

Before Presleep (~3:40pm), Suni powers up the MPC (Multi-Protocol Converter) and starts 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, Suni turns 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.]

At ~5:25am EDT, Sunita Williams powered up the SM's amateur radio equipment (Kenwood VHF transceiver with manual frequency selection, headset, & power supply) and conducted a ham radio session with students at CRA Pozohondo, Nava De Abajo (Pozohondo), Spain.

At ~9:55am, the three crewmembers had their weekly teleconference with the JSC Astronaut Office/CB (Bob Behnken), via S-band S/G-2 audio & phone patch.

At ~11:10am, Yuri Malenchenko supported a Russian PAO TV event, responding to questions from Ekaterina Beloglazova, Editor of Rossiyskiy Kosmos Magazine, an old friend of ISS cosmonauts. [How did you celebrate the 55th anniversary of the first in the world satellite launch on the ISS? The past month was chock full with various events and experiments. Please, tell us about the most interesting and important ones. Last week the Dragon vehicle arrived to the station. This time it’s an operational not a test flight. Please tell us, how the docking went since you participated in it too. What kind of cargo or equipment did it bring? How does the freezer look like? We are told that they sent you ice cream from the ground. Does it have a different taste from the one on the ground? Very soon new members will join the ISS team. Do you still maintain a tradition of welcoming guests with “bread and salt”? Oleg Novitskiy and Yevgeniy Tarelkin will go to space for the first time; they know space life “theory” very well. Do they need assistance of experienced colleagues on the station? How is crew handover going? Traditional question: What are your plans for the next month? Is it really true that nobody sends letters to ISS cosmonauts mail box? Or you simply don’t have time to answer them?]

CDR, FE-4 & FE-6 had their regular weekly PMCs (Private Medical Conferences), via S- & Ku-band audio/video, Aki at ~8:30am, Suni at ~10:25am, Yuri at ~10:45am EDT.

At ~11:55am, Hoshide & Williams conducted a teleconference with ground personnel, getting debriefed on recent OBT (Onboard Training) Dragon-Demo procedures.

The crew worked out on the CEVIS cycle ergometer with vibration isolation (FE-6), TVIS treadmill with vibration isolation & stabilization (FE-4/2x), ARED advanced resistive exercise device (CDR, FE-6), and T2/COLBERT advanced treadmill (CDR). [CDR & FE-6 are on the special experimental SPRINT protocol which diverts from the regular 2.5 hrs per day exercise regime and introduces special daily sessions involving resistive and aerobic (interval & continuous) exercise, followed by a USND (Ultrasound) leg muscle self scan in COL. No exercise is being timelined for Suni on Friday, for Aki on Thursday. If any day is not completed, Suni & Aki pick up where they left off, i.e., they would be finishing out the week with the last day of exercise on her off day. Suni’s protocol for today showed T2 (int., 30 sec.), with ARED/CEVIS (cont.) and T2 (int., 4 min.) for the next 2 days. Aki’s protocol for today showed ARED/CEVIS (cont.), with T2 (int., 4 min.) tomorrow.]

Tasks listed for FE-4 Malenchenko on the Russian discretionary “time permitting” job for today were –
  • 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),
  • 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 and PI emission platform using the SKPF-U (Photo Image Coordinate Reference System) to record target sites on the Earth surface, and
  • 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.

CEO (Crew Earth Observation) targets uplinked for today were Manila, Philippines (CAPITAL CITIES COLLECTION SITE: The Philippine capital of has a metropolitan population of 19 million and is located on a large bay on the southwest coast of the major island of Luzon. ISS pass today was in mid-afternoon under partly cloudy conditions with approach from the SW. At this time the crew was to begin looking just right of track and try for context views of this sprawling megacity within a single frame), Irrawaddy River Delta, Myanmar (the Irrawaddy River begins in the high mountains of northern Burma. It is one of southeastern Asia's 5 major rivers [Yangtze, Red, Mekong, Salween, and Irrawaddy] whose source regions are all very close together in the Folded Ranges. ISS had a mid-afternoon pass in fair weather with the delta just left of track. After tracking over the southern Bay of Bengal, ISS approached this target from the SW, trying for a late-summer view of the delta), Chaing Mai, Thailand (this sprawling metropolitan area of almost 700,000 is the economic and cultural center of northern Thailand. Today ISS had an excellent nadir pass over this target in early afternoon sun with partly cloudy conditions. At this time as ISS approached from the SW, the crew was to look for urban areas in the complex of ridges and valleys), Antananarivo, Madagascar (CAPITAL CITIES COLLECTION: This capital city of about 1.5 million is located in this large, island nation's central highland. ISS had an early afternoon pass with the target at nadir. Much of the interior of Madagascar is exposed and heavily eroded with little vegetation. The Antananarivo area has more wood lands and small lakes. At this time as ISS tracked over the elevated interior of the island partly cloudy conditions were expected, but the crew was to try for a single frame view of the entire city), La Paz, Bolivia (CAPITAL CITIES COLLECTION SITE: The Bolivian capital city is located in the western part of the country, less than 50 miles southeast of Lake Titicaca. La Paz has population of 1 to 2 million and is the world’s highest capital city, at over 10,000 feet elevation. As ISS approached the Andes from the SW at midday with partly cloudy skies, the crew was to aim towards nadir for this target), Santa Maria Vol., GTM (ISS had a partly cloudy pass approach from the SW with this large stratovolcano just right of track. A large crater on the SW flank of the volcano was caused by a catastrophic eruption in 1902. The most recent eruptive activity occurred in April of 2010. At this time as ISS approached the coast, the crew was to look just inland and try for overlapping mapping frames of the volcano - particularly of the Santiaguito lava dome on the southwestern flank), and Sian Kaan B. Mangroves, MEX (ISS had a mid-afternoon pass in partly cloudy weather for this target area located on the east coast of the Yucatan Peninsula. This large World Heritage Site of ~1.3 million acres was established as a biosphere area in 1986, and preserves fauna, flora and archeological sites. At this time, as ISS tracked northeastward over the interior of the Yucatan, the crew was to shoot just right of track towards the coast for this area with its visual cues of two major bays on the Caribbean Sea and try for a mapping strip).

Significant Events Ahead (all dates Eastern Time and subject to change):
-------------- Inc-33: Three-crew operations -------------
10/17/12 -- ISS Reboost (1-burn/two SM engines) – (11:24am EDT; 19s; delta-V: 0.30 m/s)
10/23/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S launch – K.Ford (CDR-34)/O.Novitsky/E.Tarelkin (6:51am EDT)
10/25/12 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S docking – (~8:40am EDT)
-------------- Inc-33: Six-crew operations -------------
10/28/12 -- SpX-1 Dragon unberthing (?)
10/31/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P launch
10/31/12 -- Progress M-17M/49P docking
11/12/12 -- Soyuz TMA-05M/31S undock/landing (End of Increment 33)
-------------- Inc-34: Three-crew operations -------------
12/05/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S launch – C.Hadfield (CDR-35)/T.Mashburn/R.Romanenko
12/07/12 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S docking
-------------- Inc-34: Six-crew operations -------------
02/11/13 -- Progress M-16M/48P undocking
02/12/13 -- Progress M-18M/50P launch
02/14/13 -- Progress M-18M/50P docking
03/15/13 -- Soyuz TMA-06M/32S undock/landing (End of Increment 34)
-------------- Inc-35: 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
04/23/13 -- Progress M-18M/50P undock/landing
-------------- Inc-35: Six-crew operations -------------
05/16/13 -- Soyuz TMA-07M/33S undock/landing (End of Increment 35)
-------------- Inc-36: 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
-------------- Inc-36: Six-crew operations -------------
09/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-08M/34S undock/landing (End of Increment 36)
-------------- Inc-37: 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
-------------- Inc-37: Six-crew operations -------------
11/xx/13 -- Soyuz TMA-09M/35S undock/landing (End of Increment 37)
-------------- Inc-38: 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
-------------- Inc-38: Six-crew operations -------------
03/xx/14 -- Soyuz TMA-10M/36S undock/landing (End of Increment 38)
-------------- Inc-39: Three-crew operations -------------