Allard Beutel/Melissa Mathews
Johnson Space Center, Houston
July 8, 2005
International Space Station Status Report: SS05-035
The Space Station Expedition 11 crew put in an intense week of science experiments, spacesuit preparation and other activities in anticipation of the Space Shuttle mission.
Commander Sergei Krikalev and NASA Science Officer John Phillips spent much of the week gathering and packing items to be returned in the Raffaello Multi-Purpose Logistics Module (MPLM) on the Shuttle Discovery. The MPLM will weigh 18,166 pounds when it is launched aboard Discovery and 19,745 pounds when it returns. The crew also made room for additional stowage in the Quest Airlock. The Shuttle launches July 13 and docks with the Station on July 16.
Three spacewalks are scheduled during the Shuttle mission using U.S. spacesuits. To aid spacesuit battery efficiency, Phillips conducted a series of charging and discharging cycles.
On Tuesday, the Station was raised approximately four miles to better position it for the Shuttle rendezvous. Engines on the docked Progress vehicle were fired for just over seven minutes.
On board TV cameras captured video Wednesday of then Tropical Storm Dennis, as the Station passed over the Caribbean, south of Haiti. Additional sighting opportunities are anticipated over the weekend. Throughout the week, the crew had numerous other Earth observation and photo opportunities including sightings of Mount Kilimanjaro in Kenya, the Nile River Delta in Egypt, and Hong Kong.
Krikalev repressurized the Station atmosphere using oxygen from the Progress supply vehicle and transferred water from tanks on the Progress to those in the Service Module.
Phillips and Krikalev conducted the second of three sessions with the Renal Stone experiment. The experiment investigates whether potassium citrate can be used as a countermeasure to minimize the risk of kidney stone formation in space.
The crew ended its week with a live conference with journalists at NASA's Johnson and Kennedy Space Centers. The weekend includes mostly off-duty time, routine housekeeping activities and conferences with management and support staff.
Information about the crew's activities on board the Space Station, future launch dates, and Station sighting opportunities is available on the Internet at:
Station status reports will not be issued during the Space Shuttle (STS-114) mission. Station activities will be included in Shuttle mission status reports.
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