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Orientation and Science Experiments for Station Crew

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Fri Nov 18, 2011 11:05 am via: NASA
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The Expedition 29 crew members living and working aboard the orbiting International Space Station focused on orientation activities and science experiments Thursday during their first full day as a six-member crew.

After docking in the Soyuz TMA-22 spacecraft Wednesday, the station’s newest residents, Flight Engineers Dan Burbank, Anton Shkaplerov and Anatoly Ivanishin, focused on a variety of orientation activities to familiarize themselves with their new home aboard the orbiting outpost.

The three new flight engineers also met with the rest of the Expedition 29 crew, Commander Mike Fossum and Flight Engineers Satoshi Furukawa and Sergei Volkov, to review emergency roles and responsibilities.

The station crew members will have a little less than a week together as the Expedition 29 crew before Fossum, Furukawa and Volkov head home Monday aboard the Soyuz TMA-02M spacecraft that brought them to the station June 9. Their departure will mark the beginning of Expedition 30, under the command of Burbank. A formal change-of-command ceremony is planned for Sunday.

In the Destiny laboratory, Fossum replaced and reconfigured equipment inside the Combustion Integrated Rack (CIR) which is part of the Fluids and Combustion Facility. The CIR is an experiment facility that helps researchers study how different materials combust in the microgravity environment aboard the station and can be operated by crew members or remotely by researchers on Earth.

Ivanishin worked with a Russian experiment known as CASCADE, which investigates cultivation processes of micro-organism, animal and human cells in microgravity.

Volkov and Shkaplerov also had time set aside to work with a variety of experiments including Plazmida, a Russian bioecology experiment that will examine the effect of microgravity on the rate of transfer and mobilization of bacteria plasmids.

Later, Fossum and Burbank took some time to talk with Kevin Reece from KHOU-TV in Houston during an in-flight interview that was broadcast on NASA TV.

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