June 9, 2006
Johnson Space Center, Houston
STATUS REPORT: SS06-027
INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION STATUS REPORT: SS06-027
The International Space Station crew wrapped up its week with
post-spacewalk tasks and began to turn their focus toward the arrival
of a Progress supply spacecraft and preparations for Discovery’s
upcoming shuttle mission, designated STS-121.
Commander Pavel Vinogradov and Flight Engineer Jeff Williams had a
busy weekend with closeout tasks and station configurations after the
spacewalk last week. They finished the cleanup and stowage of the
Orlan spacesuits and related tools.
The crew members enjoyed light duty days on Monday and Tuesday,
resting up after the extended spacewalk and its follow up activities.
They resumed a normal work and sleep schedule Wednesday. Another
off-duty day for the crew is scheduled for Monday.
The crew attempted to reactivate the Russian Elektron
oxygen-generating system this week following the replacement of its
external hydrogen vent valve during the June 1 spacewalk. After
several attempts, the Elektron began operating but failed about seven
hours later. Vinogradov checked the vent lines associated with the
refurbishment effort during the spacewalk and they appeared to be
clear and operating normally.
Another attempt to restart Elektron earlier today proved unsuccessful,
leading Russian specialists to believe that the problem is due to a
failed power unit. A spare unit was located by Vinogradov and will be
installed on Sunday. The crew members have at least a week of oxygen
available in the cabin atmosphere before they would need to use
supplies out of the ISS Progress 21 cargo ship tanks. The Elektron
problem has had no impact on station operations and ample alternate
supplies of oxygen are available.
This afternoon, the ISS Progress 21 thrusters were used to boost the
station by a little less than one mile, placing the complex at the
correct altitude for the launch and docking of the next cargo
vehicle, ISS Progress 22.
That supply spacecraft is scheduled to launch June 24 from the
Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, and will dock to the station on
June 26 at the Pirs docking compartment port, which currently houses
the older ISS Progress 20. It will be jettisoned on June 19 to make
way for the new cargo vehicle.
Other work this week included some final spacewalk tool stowage tasks
and the reconfiguration of the station’s systems, including the
communications system in the Russian Zvezda Service Module and the
The crew conducted a successful communications test with NASA’s Dryden
Flight Research Center, Calif., and White Sands Test Facility, N.M.,
ground sites and performed routine emergency fire drill training.
They also inspected portable breathing apparatus and fire
Williams participated in two amateur radio sessions, the first with
the Salt Brook Elementary School in New Providence, N.J., and a
second with the Scarlett Middle School, a 2004 NASA Explorer School
in Ann Arbor, Mich. Both crew members participated in an in-flight
interview with the Web site team associated with the U.S. State
Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
Williams, who also serves as the NASA’s station science officer, ran a
session of two colloid experiments: Investigating the Structure of
Paramagnetic Aggregates from Colloidal Emulsions or InSpace and
Binary Colloidal Alloy Test or BCAT. Vinogradov worked with two
Russian life science experiments - URAGAN, which is a ground and
space based system for predicting natural and manmade disasters, and
DIATOMEA, an ocean observations program.
The next station status report will be issued on Friday, June 16, or
earlier if events warrant. For more about the crew’s activities and
station sighting opportunities, visit: