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Submitted by Arthur - N1ORC

International Space Station Status Report #03-55 
4 p.m. CDT, Friday, October 24, 2003 
Expedition 7 Crew

Final handover activities are underway aboard the International Space
Station as the Expedition 7 crew prepares to return to Earth Monday,
following six months aboard the orbiting complex. Landing is scheduled
for 8:41 p.m. CST on the steppes of Kazakhstan. 

Ready to take over is the Expedition 8 crew, which has spent the last
week in space "cramming" for its role as prime station crew effective
Monday afternoon when the hatches close between the station and returning
Soyuz spacecraft, signaling the official change of command. A ceremonial
“Change of Command” ceremony took place Friday afternoon. 

Flight controllers in the U.S. and Russia have been closely monitoring
the predicted effects of the recent solar activity and anticipate no
change to any of the landing plans. NASA flight control personnel have
determined that no additional radiation exposure to the ISS crew is
expected as a result of the solar activity. Increased solar activity is
forecast for the next few weeks, and the control team will continue to
monitor the progress of events with support from the NOAA Space
Environment Center. 

Since arriving early Monday morning at their home for the next six
months, Expedition 8 Commander Mike Foale and Flight Engineer Alexander
Kaleri have spent the week familiarizing themselves with real-time
station operations from departing Expedition 7 Commander Yuri Malenchenko
and NASA ISS Science Officer Ed Lu. 

Among the handover activities conducted this week were robotic training
for Foale on the station’s remote manipulator system, called Canadarm2.
He will serve as the incoming NASA ISS science officer also, and spent a
great deal of his handover activities in the Destiny laboratory where
most of the experiment work will take place during his six months aboard.
Meanwhile, Kaleri and Malenchenko devoted their attention to operational
handover in the Russian segment of the station, which will be overseen by
Kaleri throughout the increment. 

The weekend will be devoted almost exclusively to Soyuz stowage
activities for the Expedition 7 crew’s return to Earth along with
European Space Agency astronaut Pedro Duque, who has spent the last eight
days conducting a host of science experiments in support of a commercial
contract with the Russian Aviation and Space Agency. 

The station crews will wake up Monday about 1 a.m. CST and the hatch to
the Expedition 7 crew’s Soyuz is set to be closed around 2 p.m. Undocking
is planned for 5:18 p.m. followed by the deorbit burn at 7:47 p.m. and
landing at 8:41 p.m. 

Information on the crew's activities aboard the Space Station, future
launch dates, as well as Station sighting opportunities from anywhere on
the Earth, is available on the Internet at: http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/ 

Details on Station science operations can be found on an Internet site
administered by the Payload Operations Center at NASA's Marshall Space
Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala., at: http://scipoc.msfc.nasa.gov/ 

The next ISS status report will be issued Monday, Oct. 27, after the
Expedition 7 Soyuz lands, or earlier, if events warrant. 


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