SPACE STATION STATUS REPORT #01-48
The International Space Station resumed its normal orientation control about three hours later than planned this afternoon to allow Russian flight controllers time to evaluate a potential technical problem seen following the docking of a Progress resupply craft today.
The station remained in free drift, with attitude control turned off, the normal mode for a Progress docking. The stationís orientation control system would normally have been turned back on only a few minutes after the docking, once Russian flight controllers had received indications that hooks that hard dock the supply craft to the station had closed and latched. Mission Control, Korolev, did not see the expected indication after the Progress docked to the complex at 1:43 p.m. CST.
The station remained in free drift, with steering systems off line, until about 5 p.m. CST, when Russian flight controllers determined the Progress was attached securely enough to allow the stationís steering system to operate normally. While the station was in free drift, power generation was reduced and some non-critical items onboard were powered off temporarily to conserve electriciity. Heaters that control condensation on the shell of the Destiny lab, Unity node and pressurized mating adapters on the station were turned off for a few hours as were a backup cabin air assembly and a contaminant monitor in the Quest airlock.
Once the station returned to its normal orientation, all equipment temporarily powered off was powered back on with no impact to station operations.
Russian flight controllers are continuing to evaluate the problem seen following the Progress docking. Indications are that hooks that normally constitute the second stage of the Progressí attachment to the station had not closed and latched as expected. An evaluation of the situation will continue tonight and troubleshooting aboard the station may be performed Thursday morning when the complex next moves within range of Russian ground tracking sites.
Meanwhile, at the Kennedy Space Center, Florida, all activities are proceeding as planned toward the launch of the Space Shuttle Endeavour at 6:41 p.m. CST Thursday on shuttle mission STS-108, which will ferry a fourth crew to the station. The next milestone in Endeavourís preparations will be a decision to begin fueling the shuttle for launch, expected at about 9:15 a.m. CST Thursday.
The Inernational Space Station is orbiting at an average altitude of 247 statute miles (397 km). For the latest information on launch dates and times, as well as sighting opportunities from anywhere on the Earth, visit the Web at: http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/
Human physiology experiments continue to be a focus of crew science activities as the crew prepares for its return home. Autonomous microgravity materials research continued to accumulate scientific experiment run time hours in a variety of disciplines. Overall coordination of the research is the responsibility of the Payload Operations Center at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. The Human Research Facility is managed by the Johnson Space Center. Details on station science operations can be found on the Web at: http://www.scipoc.msfc.nasa.gov
The next ISS status report will be issued as warranted by events or combined in regularly scheduled STS-108 mission status reports throughout the flight.
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