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Station Crew Conducts Inspections, Performs Maintenance

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Fri Sep 3, 2010 9:27 am via: NASA
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After taking part in Thursday’s daily planning conference with flight control teams on Earth and performing some routine morning inspections, Expedition 24 Commander Alexander Skvortsov and Flight Engineer Fyodor Yurchikhin worked in the Russian segment of the station, cleaning ventilation components and monitoring its environmental and life support systems.

Flight Engineers Shannon Walker and Doug Wheelock began their day by collecting blood samples for an experiment that studies the decrease in blood pressure when the human body is exposed to microgravity. In order to increase the blood pressure to the level it was on Earth, salt is added to the crew’s diet. To monitor this, blood pressure readings are performed at different intervals during the mission.

The eye (center of frame) of Hurricane Earl is seen in this image taken as the International Space Station passed over the storm on Wednesday. Credit: NASA TV

The eye (center of frame) of Hurricane Earl is seen in this image taken as the International Space Station passed over the storm on Wednesday. Credit: NASA TV

Wheelock also spent time performing routine maintenance and making some adjustments to the Fluids Integrated Rack (FIR). The FIR is a fluid physics research facility designed to host investigations in areas such as colloids, gels, bubbles, wetting and capillary action and phase changes including boiling and cooling.

Flight Engineer Tracy Caldwell Dyson took surface and air samples throughout the station for analysis by experts on the ground. These samples are taken periodically to ensure that the environment aboard the station remains safe for its inhabitants.

Flight Engineer Mikhail Kornienko conducted an observation with the Rusalka experiment, which is a test of procedures for remote determination of methane and carbon dioxide content in the Earth’s atmosphere.

Later, Caldwell Dyson, Wheelock and Walker answered questions about life on the station, their daily activities and their unique view of Hurricane Earl during in-flight interviews with KXTV-TV in Sacramento, Calif. and Fox News Radio.

The ISS Progress 38 cargo craft, loaded with trash and other items for disposal, undocked from the aft end of the station’s Zvezda service module Tuesday. Russian flight controllers will conduct thruster tests with the Progress to gather engineering data before sending it to a fiery descent Monday over the Pacific Ocean.

Progress 38’s departure clears the aft port of Zvezda for the arrival of the next Russian resupply vehicle, ISS Progress 39, which is set for launch Sept. 8. Progress 39 will deliver 2.5 tons of food, fuel and supplies for the Expedition 24 crew.

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