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STS-107 MCC Status Report #08

Submitted by Arthur - N1ORC

STS-107 MCC Status Report #08 
Wednesday, January 22, 2003 -- 6 p.m. CDT 
Mission Control Center, Houston, Texas 

The seven astronauts aboard Columbia beamed down television views of
their smallest companions in orbit today, including insects, spiders,
fish, bees and silk worms that are part of the Space Technology and
Research Students package of experiments designed and developed by
students in six countries. 

The television pictures showed ants busily creating and moving about
tunnels in an ant farm developed by students from Fowler High School in
Syracuse, N.Y.; Garden Orb Weaver spiders beginning to construct webs in
an enclosure designed by students at Glen Waverly Secondary College of
Melbourne, Australia; silkworm larvae beginning to develop in an
experiment designed by students at Jingshan School, Beijing, China;
Medaka fish embryos developing in a tank designed by students at the
Tokyo Institute of Technology in Tokyo; and carpenter bees beginning to
construct nests by boring tunnels in wood. 

The experiments are being monitored by both teams of astronauts as they
work in shifts to support the 80 different experiments aboard the space
shuttle and the Spacehab Research Double Module. The Red Team --
Commander Rick Husband, Mission Specialists Kalpana Chawla and Laurel
Clark and Israel Space Agency Payload Specialist Ilan Ramon – enjoyed a
half-day off before resuming work with a variety of other experiments. 

The Red Team worked with the growth of prostate cancer cells in the
Bioreactor Demonstration System, shutdown of the Laminar Soot Processes
experiment, which completed 14 runs in an effort to better understand the
nature of soot created by combustion in microgravity, and bacteria and
yeast growth as part of the Microbial Physiology Flight Experiment. They
also checked on the growth of plants in the Astroculture experiment that
includes miniature roses being grown in space to produce new fragrances
for perfumes. 

The Red Team handed over to the Blue Team – Pilot Willie McCool, Payload
Commander Michael Anderson and Mission Specialist Dave Brown – at 5 p.m.
CST, and prepared for a sleep shift beginning at 7:09 p.m. The Blue Team
awoke at 3:09 p.m. to the song “Hakuna Matata” by the Baja Men for
Anderson from his two kids. 

The Blue Team began its day with work on the SOFBALL, or Structures of
Flame Balls at Low Lewis-number experiment, which scientists hope will
improve their understanding of lean (low fuel) burning combustion and
lead to improvements in engine efficiency, reduced emissions, and fire

The overnight team also worked with the Advanced Respiratory Monitoring
System, a European Space Agency experiment looking at how the human body
adapts to weightlessness. 

After lunch, the team was to calibrate the Mediterranean Israeli Dust
Experiment (MEIDEX) and resume observations after adjusting the shuttle
orientation in orbit to facilitate measurement of small particles in the
atmosphere over the Mediterranean Sea and Atlantic Ocean off the coast of
the Sahara desert. 

Cooling and humidity control of the Spacehab module is being effectively
managed through minor adjustments to systems aboard Columbia and the
science module. 

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