6 p.m. CST Monday, Nov. 25, 2008
Mission Control Center, Houston, Texas
STS-126 MCC Status Report #23
The mission extension day has paid off for the on-orbit crews as well as the ground teams today. Not only is the crew ahead of schedule with transfer activity, but their hard work on a tricky water recycling unit and the massive solar array joint are showing signs of improvement.

The Urine Processor Assembly (UPA) ran three successful cycles since modifications Sunday and Monday. Based on that success, program managers decided they will leave the distillation assembly on orbit. They were able to get the samples processed through the UPA and Water Processing Assembly and dispensed through the Potable Water Dispenser (PWD). Those initial samples will be returned on Endeavour. Samples will continue to be collected during the next several months to ensure it is working properly before being used for crew consumption.

The starboard Solar Alpha Rotary Joint is back in its abbreviated operations mode after completing two full test orbits tracking the sun earlier today. Preliminary data shows a reduction in SARJ operating current from .9 to as low as .17 amps, an indication that the SARJ is moving more freely than before. Engineers plan to continue monitoring the starboard SARJ’s performance. They also saw a reduction in the port SARJ current use as well, due to the preventative lubrication.

Final transfer and packing of the Multi-Purpose Logistics Module Leonardo was the main activity of the day for Endeavour crew members Commander Chris Ferguson, Pilot Eric Boe and mission specialists Don Pettit, Steve Bowen, Heidemarie Stefanyshyn-Piper, Shane Kimbrough and Greg Chamitoff, as well as Expedition 18 Commander Mike Fincke and station flight engineers Yury Lonchakov and Sandra Magnus. They also completed installation of the Harmony Common Berthing Mechanism controller, one of the final steps to close up the pressurized cargo carrier for its transfer back to Endeavour scheduled for Wednesday.

Ferguson, Pettit, Bowen, Boe, and Piper also participated in media interviews.

Endeavour’s crew is scheduled to go to bed at 10:55 p.m. and be awakened at 6:55 a.m. Wednesday. The next shuttle status report will be issued at the start of the crew day, or earlier if events warrant.

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