Station Crew Busy as New Crew on Its Way
The Soyuz TMA-06M spacecraft blasts
through the atmosphere after launching
Photo credit: NASA TV
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Flight Engineers Kevin Ford, Oleg Novitskiy and Evgeny Tarelkin will orbit the Earth for two days before docking to the Poisk module at 8:35 a.m. Thursday. The new trio will join Commander Suni Williams and Flight Engineers Aki Hoshide and Yuri Malenchenko who’ve been residing at the orbital laboratory since July 17.
The three crew members now onboard the station, Williams, Hoshide and Malenchenko, are busy with their daily science and maintenance tasks. Key events lay ahead for the crew including the unberthing of the SpaceX Dragon capsule on Sunday and a Nov. 1 spacewalk to repair a radiator ammonia leak.
Williams began her work day repairing a leaky valve in the Carbon Dioxide Removal Assembly. She also conducted a robotics test in cooperation with the European Space Agency. That test commands a rover on the ground in Munich, Germany, from space. Williams then worked on the VIABLE experiment which evaluates microbial biofilm development on space materials.
Hoshide worked in the Kibo lab module to retrieve biological samples from a science freezer for the Resist Tubule experiment. He also exercised for the VO2Max experiment which measures an astronaut’s aerobic capacity in microgravity.
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The SpaceX Dragon capsule is scheduled to leave the station after its unberthing from the Harmony node on Sunday. Williams and Hoshide got together Tuesday to review departure procedures for the first commercial cargo craft to visit the station. The duo will use the Canadarm2 to unberth and release Dragon before its return to Earth and splashdown in the Pacific Ocean for recovery.
Malenchenko later joined his two crewmates for a fit check of the Soyuz Kazbek seats they will use when they leave the station on Nov. 12 for their return home. He began his day collecting saliva and blood samples for a Russian experiment. He also conducted a video test in the Russian segment of the station and worked ongoing maintenance.
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