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*International Space Station Status Report #06-47*
*4:30 p.m. CDT, Thursday, Oct. 26, 2006*
*Expedition 13 Crew*

New supplies arrived at the International Space Station Thursday as an 
unpiloted Russian cargo spacecraft docked to the aft port of the Zvezda 
Service Module.

With almost 2.5 tons of food, fuel and supplies for the station's 
Expedition 14 crew, the ISS Progress 23 automatically docked to Zvezda 
at 9:29 a.m. CDT as the spacecraft and the station flew 220 miles above 
Italy. The 23rd Progress to visit the station was launched Monday from 
the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Following the initial docking, the final latching of the Progress craft 
to the station was delayed by about three and a half hours as Russian 
flight controllers evaluated potential interference by an antenna on the 
spacecraft. At the time of docking, flight controllers could not confirm 
that the antenna used by the Progress' Kurs automated docking system had 
retracted as commanded. If the antenna had remained extended, it could 
have interfered with the final latching of the supply ship to the station.

After reviewing data, Mission Control Moscow commanded the Progress' 
docking probe to slowly retract, pulling the ship firmly into the port 
and aligning the hooks and latches that hold it secure. Latches for the 
craft on the station were secured at about 1 p.m. CDT. Flight 
controllers will command additional latches on the Progress to close 
Friday. This allows the operation to be completed in a normal manner 
over Russian communications sites.

During the hours between initial docking and final latching, the 
station's orientation was allowed to drift to avoid any disturbance of 
the softly docked cargo ship. The station's drift resulted in lower 
power generation by the solar arrays. The crew then powered off several 
pieces of non-critical equipment as outlined in a standard procedure 
that reduces power consumption. Soon after the latches were closed, 
however, the station's attitude control was restored and power 
generation was returned to normal.

Due to the long operations Thursday, Expedition 14 Commander Mike 
Lopez-Alegria and flight engineers Mikhail Tyurin and Thomas Reiter will 
open the hatch to the supply ship on Friday. Supplies on the Progress 
include food, fuel, oxygen and air, clothing, experiment hardware and 
spare parts, as well as personal items from the crew's families. The new 
Progress joins an older Progress supply ship that arrived at the 
station’s Pirs Docking Compartment in June. Progress 22 will remain 
docked until mid-January. It will be used to stow trash, and its supply 
of oxygen will help replenish the station’s atmosphere when required.

ISS Progress 23 holds 1,918 pounds of propellant for the Russian 
thrusters, 110 pounds of oxygen and almost 2,800 pounds of spare parts, 
experiment hardware and life support components, including parts for the 
Russian Elektron oxygen-generation system. The system has been 
inoperable since last month, and Tyurin is expected to resume repairs on 
the unit next week.

Engineers continue to review data from the station’s S-band 
communications system, which experienced dropouts late last week in the 
transmission link of one of two redundant channels used for voice and 
commanding capability. After collecting data last weekend from “string 
1” of the S-band system, its transmitter was reactivated Wednesday, but 
the communications problem occurred once again.

“String 2” of the system is being used for voice and commanding with no 
impact to station activities. Flight controllers are analyzing the 
problem to determine if any procedural adjustments must be made for the 
upcoming flight of Discovery to the station on the STS-116 mission.

In other activities, the crew conducted sound level measurements in the 
station’s modules and installed cables in the Russian segment of the 
station. They performed regular station maintenance and took time to 
chat with a reporter from the Orange County Register in California on 
Tuesday. Reiter continued his work with European plant growth 
experiments while throughout the week Lopez-Alegria did log entries for 
a sleep experiment.

In two weeks, the crew will begin preparations for a spacewalk Nov. 22 
by Tyurin and Lopez-Alegria in Russian Orlan suits from the Pirs Docking 
Compartment to replace and retrieve several science experiments from the 
hull of the Zvezda Service Module. Tyurin also plans to hit a golf ball 
from a bracket on Pirs as part of a Russian commercial activity. The 
next station status report will be issued Nov. 3 or earlier if events 
warrant. For more about the crew's activities and station sighting 


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