News

02 November 2012

International Space Station Status Report

Expedition 33 Crew

The Expedition 33 crew members living and working aboard the International Space Station wrapped up a busy work week Friday highlighted by the departure of the SpaceX Dragon cargo craft, the arrival of the ISS Progress 49 cargo craft and a spacewalk to troubleshoot an ammonia leak in one of the station’s radiators.

The SpaceX Dragon cargo craft splashed down in the Pacific Ocean Sunday, Oct. 25 about 250 miles off the coast of Baja California, Mexico, marking a successful conclusion to the first contracted resupply mission to the station. Dragon delivered more than 800 pounds of supplies to the Expedition 33 crew and returned more than 1,600 pounds of cargo and research to Earth.

The ISS Progress 49 cargo vehicle launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 3:41 a.m. Wednesday, docking to the aft end of the station’s Zvezda service module at 9:33 a.m. to deliver 2.9 tons of supplies to the orbiting complex. This was only the second time a Progress performed a same-day rendezvous and docking to the station, a trip that has typically taken two days in the past.

Commander Suni Williams and Flight Engineer Aki Hoshide completed a 6-hour, 38-minute spacewalk on Thursday to support ground-based troubleshooting of an ammonia leak on the station’s port side truss. During the spacewalk, they successfully reconfigured the ammonia cooling lines in the Early Ammonia Servicer system and deployed the Trailing Thermal Control Radiator. Over the next weeks and months, flight controllers at Mission Control Houston will monitor telemetry to see if the leak continues.

Aboard the station Friday, Williams and Hoshide participated in post-spacewalk medical checks and were joined by Flight Engineer Kevin Ford for a spacewalk debriefing with flight controllers.

Hoshide also performed a loop scrub and water recharge on the spacesuits to prepare them for long-term storage and reconfigured spacewalking tools and equipment in the Quest airlock.

Ford worked with the Medaka Osteoclast experiment, which studies the effects of microgravity on the biological systems of Medaka fish.

Flight Engineers Oleg Novitskiy, Yuri Malenchenko and Evgeny Tarelkin worked in the Russian segment of the station, monitoring its systems and performing a variety of housekeeping and maintenance duties.

Malenchenko worked with the Plasma Crystal experiment, an investigation of the behavior of plasma-dust structures in space.

Novitskiy worked with the with the Bioemulsion experiment, which looks at the biomass of microorganisms and biologically active substances.

Over the weekend, the station residents will continue ongoing scientific research and perform their regular maintenance duties. They also will enjoy some off-duty time and have an opportunity to speak with family members.

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