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Station Crew Prepares for Arrivals and Departures

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Fri Feb 18, 2011 10:22 am via: NASA
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Flight Engineers Paolo Nespoli and Alexander Kaleri reviewed approach and docking procedures for the European Space Agency’s Automated Transfer Vehicle-2 (ATV-2) “Johannes Kepler” Thursday. ATV-2 launched at 4:50 p.m. EST Wednesday atop an Ariane 5 rocket from the Arianespace launch site in Kourou, French Guiana.

ATV-2 is a pressurized unmanned cargo craft loaded with crew supplies, oxygen, propellant and research supplies. It is scheduled to automatically dock with the Zvezda service module on Feb. 24 and provide the capability to reboost the station to a higher orbit, provide attitude control, help desaturate the complex’s control moment gyroscopes and perform any necessary debris avoidance maneuvers.

The ISS Progress 39 cargo ship is scheduled to undock from the Zvezda service module at 8:12 a.m. Sunday. The departure of Progress 39 will clear the way for ATV-2 to dock with the station. Progress 39 will be commanded to deorbit for a destructive entry back into the Earth’s atmosphere over the Pacific.

The station crew completed final preparations for Friday’s relocation of the Japanese Kounotori2 H-II Transfer Vehicle that arrived Jan. 27. During the relocation, Nespoli and Flight Engineer Catherine Coleman will use the station’s robotic arm to move Kounotori2 from the Harmony module’s Earth-facing port to its space-facing port. The maneuver is expected to begin about 6:15 a.m. and last about 6 hours.

The relocation will provide the clearance needed for space shuttle Discovery to dock at the forward port of the Harmony module during the upcoming STS-133 mission to the station later this month.

Flight Engineers Dmitry Kondratyev and Oleg Skripochka conducted routine maintenance on their Russian Orlan spacesuits and were debriefed during a conference with spacewalk specialists on Earth. The two cosmonauts completed a successful spacewalk Wednesday.

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