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>December 23, 2005
>J.D. Harrington
>Headquarters, Washington
>(202) 358-5241 
>James Hartsfield
>Johnson Space Center, Houston
>Phone: (281) 483-5111 
>A holiday delivery arrived at the International Space Station today 
>for the Expedition 12 crew. An unpiloted Russian Progress cargo craft 
>linked up automatically to the station's Pirs Docking Compartment at 
>approximately 2:46 p.m. EST.(1946 UTC) The Progress was launched Wednesday from 
>Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. 
>Commander Bill McArthur and Flight Engineer Valery Tokarev will open 
>the hatch to Progress, when leak checks are completed later today. 
>The crew begins unloading cargo this weekend. 
>The Progress holds 1,940 pounds of propellant for the station's 
>Russian thrusters; 183 pounds of back up oxygen and air for the 
>Russian Elektron system; and 463 pounds of water to augment onboard 
>supplies. More than 3,000 pounds of spare parts, experiment hardware, 
>life support components and holiday gifts round out the cargo. 
>The Progress that arrived Sept. 10 will remain docked until early 
>March. The crew will stow trash in it, and on Dec. 31, use the 
>remaining 43 kilograms (94.6 pounds) of oxygen in the craft's tanks 
>to replenish station cabin pressure. 
>On Saturday, McArthur and Tokarev plan to document various experiments 
>in both the U.S. and Russian station modules. They will celebrate 
>Christmas talking with their families, viewing Earth from orbit and 
>dining on packaged Russian foods. The meal includes fish, meat 
>dishes, vegetables and pastries. 
>Earlier in the week, McArthur and Tokarev conducted routine servicing 
>of environmental systems and filters and continued biomedical 
>experiments. McArthur inspected seals around the hatches of the U.S. 
>modules and down linked educational videos. 
>The videos explained the differences between U.S. and Russian 
>spacesuits; demonstrated how materials are recycled on orbit; and how 
>the principles of Newton's Laws of Motion affect life and work in the 
>absence of gravity. 
>McArthur also operated the Capillary Flow-Contact Line and Binary 
>Colloidal Alloy Test-3 (BCAT-3) experiments. Capillary flow is the 
>key process used to move fluids in a microgravity environment. The 
>Contact Line portion examines the interface between the liquid and 
>solid surface of the container. The experiment investigates capillary 
>and fluid flows in containers with complex shapes. Results could be 
>used by designers of low gravity fluid systems in future spacecraft. 
>BCAT-3 examines the behavior of particles suspended in liquids in 
>microgravity with potential future commercial applications. 
>The Elektron oxygen-generation system in the Zvezda module remains up 
>and running on its primary pump. It will be shut down on Dec. 28, and 
>the crew will burn solid fuel oxygen generation candles for two days 
>to recertify the system. 
>McArthur discussed life and work on the station with newspaper 
>reporters from his home state of North Carolina. He also spoke about 
>his mission with students from the Carman Park Elementary School in 
>Flint, Mich. 
>On Christmas Day, Tokarev will have a ham radio discussion with 
>operators at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in Star City, 
>Russia. The purpose is to honor cosmonaut Gennady Strekalov, who died 
>on Christmas Day one year ago at age 64. Strekalov was a veteran of 
>five spaceflights. 
>For information about crew activities, future launch dates and station 
>sighting opportunities on the Web, visit: 
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