Zarya began its third full day in space in an orbit 226 by 156 statute miles. During two separate engine firings, the module's orbit was raised on both sides placing it in a 248 by 194 statute mile orbit. One final altitude adjust maneuver is scheduled for early Tuesday morning that will nearly circularize the orbit at about 250 statute miles.
Zarya will then drift for two weeks, slowly dropping its orbit to an altitude of about 242 statute miles at which Endeavour and its crew will arrive on Dec. 6.
The first engine firing aboard Zarya occurred at 8:26 this morning Moscow time (12:26 a.m. EST). The 31 second burn changed the module's velocity by 21 feet per second. The second burn about an hour later, lasted nearly two minutes and changed the velocity by 78 feet per second.
System checks continued as well throughout the day as Zarya moved within tracking range of several linked ground sites across Russia. Each ground station pass allowed flight controllers in the Zarya control room and NASA's Houston Support Room to monitor the data flowing from computers onboard the module.
Other highlights from on-orbit checkouts aboard Zarya included completion of checkouts of its motion control system in the 'free flight' mode; confirmation of on board systems to monitor atmospheric temperatures inside the module; a test of the fire detection and suppression system, and deactivation of the Gas Analyzer.
The Gas Analyzer continues to show slightly higher humidity levels, but controllers believe this may be a simple calibration error. The unit's manufacturer is being consulted on this possibility.
Battery number 1 continued to indicate a higher charge than the other five batteries. Telemetry data is being analyzed to determine the discrepancy.
Plans for tomorrow in addition to the orbit raising burn, controllers will test Zarya's multiplexer-demultiplexer and monitor systems already checked out.
During times when Zarya is not actively performing systems checks or other operations, it is put into a slow spin to conserve fuel and maintain moderate temperatures on the spacecraft. Now at its higher altitude, Zarya is circling Earth every 91 minutes at inclination of 51.6 degrees to the equator.
The next International Space Station status report will be issued Tuesday morning, or as developments warrant.
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