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ISS STATUS REPORT #04-50



Submitted by Arthur - N1ORC -- Amsat A/C #31468

*International Space Station Status Report #04-50*
*6:30 p.m. CDT Friday, Sept. 3, 2004*
*Expedition 9 Crew*

Smoothly and ahead of schedule, Expedition 9 Commander Gennady Padalka 
and NASA Science Officer Mike Fincke completed the fourth and final 
spacewalk of their six-month mission today. Padalka and Fincke spent 
five hours, 21 minutes outside completing mainenance tasks and 
installing antennas to prepare for the initial arrival of a new European 
cargo ship next year.

Wearing Russian Orlan spacesuits, Padalka and Fincke began the spacewalk 
at 11:43 a.m. CDT, emerging from the Pirs airlock affixed to the Zvezda 
Service Module. It was Padalka’s sixth career spacewalk and the fourth 
for Fincke, all of his conducted during this expedition. The spacewalk 
was supervised by Russian flight controllers at the Mission Control 
Center in Korolev, outside Moscow.

After setting up tools and tethers, Padalka and Fincke quickly went to 
work. On the Zarya module, they replaced a pump control panel that 
measures the module's coolant levels. They then installed a series of 
tether guides on four handrails. The guides are intended to prevent 
future spacewalkers’ tethers from becoming snagged.

As the Station moved into orbital darkness, the spacewalkers took a rest 
break. During the break, flight controllers in Houston collected data on 
the orientation of the outpost. The information will help determine if 
the cooling systems of the Russian spacesuits contribute to changes in 
the Station’s orientation. Throughout today's spacewalk, the Station 
remained in predicted orientations. No unanticipated measures were 
needed to maintain its stability.

Padalka and Fincke spent two and a half hours on the exterior of Zvezda, 
installing three communications antennas at its aft end. Those antennas, 
along with other equipment installed during an Aug. 3 spacewalk, will be 
used next year. They will guide the European Space Agency’s unpiloted 
Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV), the "Jules Verne" cargo ship, to its 
maiden docking with the Station. Three more ATV navigation antennas will 
be installed by the next Station crew, Expedition 10, in February. The 
Expedition 11 crew will install ATV communications gear inside Zvezda as 
well.

Padalka and Fincke returned to Pirs and installed protective handrail 
covers at one of the two airlock hatches. The covers will ensure tethers 
do not inadvertently wrap around the handrails.

Fincke also photographed a suitcase-sized tray of Japanese commercial 
experiments mounted on Zvezda to measure the effect of micrometeoroids 
on a variety of materials. Called Micro-Particle Capturer and Space 
Environment Exposure Devices, they were installed on Zvezda almost three 
years ago.

With their work done, Padalka and Fincke returned to the airlock and 
closed the hatch at 5:04 p.m. CDT. The spacewalk was the 56th in support 
of Station assembly and maintenance and the 31st based from the Station. 
In all, Padalka and Fincke have spent 15 hours and 45 minutes outside 
the Station during their four spacewalks together. To date, spacewalkers 
have spent more than 338 hours outside the Station for maintenance and 
assembly work.

For information on the crew's activities aboard the Space Station, 
future launch dates, as well as a list of opportunities to see the 
Station from anywhere on the Earth, visit:

http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/

For details on Station science operations provided by the Payload 
Operations Center at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, 
Ala., visit:

http://scipoc.msfc.nasa.gov/

The next ISS status report will be issued on Friday, Sept. 10, or 
earlier, if events warrant.
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