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ISS Status Report #07-15


*International Space Station Status Report #07-15*
*3:30 p.m. CDT Friday, March 23, 2007*
*Expedition 14 Crew*

HOUSTON - The Expedition 14 crew continued work this week on scientific 
experiments and increased the bandwidth on the International Space 
Station's computer network.

Commander Michael Lopez-Alegria and Flight Engineer Suni Williams spent 
time working with experiments that may hold the key to several aspects 
of long-duration space flight as NASA looks forward to missions back to 
the moon and on to Mars or other destinations.

Each served as test subject and operator for the Anomalous Long Term 
Effects in Astronauts' Central Nervous System experiment that examines 
how cosmic radiation affects brain waves. As test subjects, they wore an 
electroencephalograph cap that records readings of their brain 
functions, and over that, a special helmet with Italian-designed 
instruments that records the amount and types of cosmic rays passing 
through the station. Since cosmic radiation is even more prevalent at 
greater distances from Earth, the research could lead to countermeasures 
important to the safety and productivity of future explorers.

Lopez-Alegria and Williams also worked with the Nutritional Status 
Assessment experiment tracking how their bodies process nutrients in 
space and how food supplies are affected by storage in that environment.

Additionally, Lopez-Alegria provided the final samples associated with 
the Renal Stone Risk during Spaceflight: Assessment and Countermeasure 
Validation investigation, which is looking at the space effectiveness of 
a drug used on Earth to prevent kidney stones. Flight Engineer Mikhail 
Tyurin worked with three Russian experiments that monitor cosmic rays 
and background radiation as they relate to long-duration flights and 
documented the condition of the Earth below from the unique vantage 
point of the station.

The crew worked on an upgrade to the laptop computer network. The new, 
integrated station computer network will be 10 times faster than the 
current network, using Ethernet connectivity over a router and either 
cables or wireless equipment. This will eliminate drag-through cables 
from the U.S. segment into the Russian segment. The work was accelerated 
because of the STS-117 launch delay.

They also continued preparations for the undocking and discarding of the 
ISS Progress 23 cargo ship, which will be full of trash when it departs 
Tuesday, March 27. Russian flight controllers sent commands Friday that 
piped the last of the Progress 23 oxygen supplies into the station, and 
vented the Progress' propellant and oxidizer lines overboard to ensure a 
safe departure. The Progress is scheduled to undock at 1:11 p.m. CDT 
next Tuesday.

The station traffic schedule includes next Thursday's relocation of the 
Soyuz TMA-9 spacecraft from the Earth-facing port of the Zarya module to 
the aft port of the Zvezda Service Module. All three crew members will 
undock the Soyuz at 5:25 p.m. and redock at 5:53 p.m. This will make 
room for the arrival of the Soyuz TMA-10 spacecraft carrying the 
Expedition 15 crew and U.S. spaceflight participant Charles Simonyi. The 
new crew is scheduled to launch from the Baikanour Cosmodrome in 
Kazakhstan April 7 at 12:31 p.m. and dock with the station April 9 at 
2:15 p.m.

Following a week of joint operations, Lopez-Alegria, Tyurin and Simonyi 
will climb into Soyuz TMA-9 and head for home April 20. They will leave 
Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin and Flight Engineer Oleg Kotov on board with 
Williams to start Expedition 15.

For more about the crew's activities and station sighting opportunities, 



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