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Spacewalk Preps and Cargo Transfers for Crew

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Sat Apr 16, 2011 7:33 am via: NASA
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The Expedition 27 crew members were busy with preparations for upcoming spacewalks and cargo transfers Friday as they orbit the Earth aboard the International Space Station.

Flight Engineers Paolo Nespoli and Ron Garan participated in a spacewalk planning conference, tagging-up with experts and reviewing tasks to prepare for the spacewalks scheduled during the STS-134 mission. Space shuttle Endeavour is targeted for liftoff on April 29 to begin the STS-134 mission.

Garan and Flight Engineer Cady Coleman prepared tools that will be used during the four spacewalks scheduled during the STS-134 mission, including some maintenance work on a pair of grease guns that will be used to lubricate solar array joints and the Dextre robotic manipulator.

Commander Dmitry Kondratyev and Nespoli collected and loaded trash and other unneeded items into the ISS Progress 41 cargo craft that is scheduled to undock from the station’s Pirs docking compartment April 22. Once the Progress is undocked, it will move a safe distance away from the station for a few days of engineering tests before being deorbited by Russian flight controllers for a destructive re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere on April 26.

Kondratyev, Nespoli, Garan and Coleman also reviewed cargo transfer and stowage plans with flight control teams to prepare for the departure of the European Space Agency’s “Johannes Kepler” Automated Transfer Vehicle-2 (ATV-2) in June. Once its mission is complete, ATV-2 will undock from the aft end of the Zvezda service module and burn up as it re-enters the Earth’s atmosphere, disposing of unneeded waste from the station.

The station’s newest residents, Garan and Flight Engineers Andrey Borisenko and Alexander Samokutyaev had some time set aside for station adaptation and orientation activities as they adjust to their new home aboard the orbiting laboratory.

Over the weekend, the crew members will continue their daily physical exercise routines to counteract the effects of long-term exposure to weightlessness in space. They also will enjoy some off-duty time, continue regular maintenance duties and have an opportunity to speak with family members.

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