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ISS STATUS REPORT #05-34 - 1 JULY 2005



SUBMITTED BY ARTHUR N1ORC - AMSAT A/C #31468

*International Space Station Status Report #05-34*
*3:00 p.m. CDT, Friday, July 1, 2005*
*Expedition 11 Crew*

The residents of the International Space Station were informed today 
that they may welcome visitors arriving on a Space Shuttle in two weeks.

Senior NASA managers yesterday set a July 13 launch date for the Space 
Shuttle's Return to Flight, a mission that will see the Shuttle 
Discovery fly to the Station. Commander Eileen Collins and her crew are 
scheduled to lift off at 2:51 p.m. CDT on the first U.S. space flight 
since the February 2003 loss of the Shuttle Columbia. Discovery will 
dock to the Space Station two days later, July 15 at 11:27 a.m. CDT.

The Space Station’s Expedition 11 Commander Sergei Krikalev and Flight 
Engineer John Phillips spent time this week preparing the outpost for 
the first joint Shuttle and Station mission since Endeavour departed in 
December 2002.

In preparation for docking, Phillips continued installation of a camera 
used to align the Shuttle and Station during the link up. A circuit 
breaker had tripped during an installation attempt last Friday. 
Engineers determined a power supply was at fault. Once the power supply 
was replaced, Phillips completed the installation and checkout procedure 
Tuesday.

Krikalev and Phillips also practiced taking photographs from windows in 
the Zvezda living quarters module in preparation for Discovery’s 
arrival. In two weeks, they will use two digital cameras with 
high-powered lenses to shoot the thermal tiles on the orbiter during its 
approach. The pictures will be sent to Mission Control to help engineers 
assess the health of Discovery’s heat shield.

The crew also operated the Station’s robotic arm, Canadarm2, as a 
checkout before Discovery arrives. In addition to verifying the system’s 
operation, the activity served as training for Krikalev and Phillips. 
The arm was commanded to walk off the Destiny lab’s operating base to 
the Mobile Base System (MBS) on the truss Wednesday, and then back again 
Thursday. A similar procedure will be done during the Shuttle mission.

The arm will be positioned on Destiny’s base to observe the arrival of 
Discovery, for installation of the Rafaello Multi-Purpose Logistics 
Module and to support three spacewalks by the Shuttle crew. From the MBS 
operating position, cameras on the arm will be used for situational 
awareness during potential protective tile inspections the day after 
docking.

Phillips also prepared for Discovery’s arrival by consolidating 
equipment to make room for the nine-person joint crew and packing 
equipment for return to Earth on Discovery.

This week Krikalev installed and tested equipment for another visiting 
vehicle. When the European Space Agency’s Automated Transfer Vehicle 
(ATV) arrives next year, it will use Proximity Communications Equipment 
(PCE), or space-to-space communications, to rendezvous and dock to the 
Station’s Russian segment. The ATV has the capability to bring more than 
eight tons of equipment and supplies to the crew.

The current cargo spacecraft docked to the Station, a Russian Progress 
vehicle, was used Wednesday to raise the Station’s altitude. The 
vehicle’s engines burned for five minutes, 18 seconds to raise the 
Station’s orbit to 221.5 by 215.9 statute miles. The boost began the 
adjustments needed for rendezvous with Space Shuttle Discovery. Another 
burn is scheduled for July 6 at 9:58 a.m. CDT to enhance the rendezvous 
opportunities during the Shuttle’s July launch window that extends from 
July 13 to July 31.

The Progress also was used to pressurize the Station’s cabin atmosphere 
with additional oxygen. Each day it was required, Tuesday and Friday, 
eleven pounds of oxygen were added to the atmosphere in the absence of 
continual oxygen generation by the Elektron system, which is not 
currently operating. Other supplies aboard the Station could support the 
crew for the rest of this year, if needed. Additional supplies and a 
replacement liquids unit, the heart of the Elektron, are scheduled to 
arrive later this year.

Phillips, serving as NASA’s Station Science Officer, conducted a 
physiological experiment Wednesday. For the experiment, Phillips wore a 
special pair of Lycra cycling tights equipped with sensors to study his 
movements. The sensors will gather data to help researchers better 
understand how arms and legs are used differently in space. This 
information could lead to enhanced countermeasures to help astronauts 
better maintain bone density and muscle mass during long duration 
spaceflights.

He also wrote in a journal and filled out a questionnaire for the 
Journals experiment. With this experiment, researchers hope to improve 
equipment and procedures to help astronauts cope with the isolation 
encountered during long duration spaceflight.

Monday, Phillips performed a training procedure and used a voice 
operated computer system for the first time on Station. Called Clarissa, 
the system was developed at NASA’s Ames Research Center in an effort to 
ease astronaut workload. Clarissa is ‘hands-free’ and responds to 
astronauts’ voice commands, reading procedure steps out loud as they 
work, helping keep track of which steps have been completed, and 
supporting flexible voice-activated alarms and timers.

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://www.nasa.gov/station

The next ISS status report will be issued on Friday, July 8, or earlier, 
if events warrant.

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