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RRM Activities Paused While Controllers Analyze Software

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Wed Jan 16, 2013 10:47 pm via: NASA
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The Canadian Space Agency (CSA) Tuesday evening requested a temporary pause in the operations for the Robotic Refueling Mission (RRM). An intermittent difference in the software that controls Canadarm2, the International Space Station’s Canadian-built Remote Manipulator System, requires further analysis to ensure safe operations. Canadarm2 and the Special Purpose Dexterous Manipulator, or Dextre, has temporarily been placed in a safe configuration while engineering teams on the ground assess the data. CSA will provide a status shortly to determine when work can safely resume.

Houston and Canadian ground controllers are working together on the RRM experiment. The Canadarm2 with Dextre attached was working with the RRM hardware to test techniques to service and refuel satellites to extend their original missions.

Flight controllers are also getting ready to fire the engines of the docked ISS Progress 49 resupply craft Wednesday evening. The engine firing will raise the station’s perigee by one mile in preparation for next month’s arrival of the ISS Progress 50 cargo craft. The new Progress vehicle will launch and dock to the station on the same day after four orbits on Feb. 11.

Back inside the station, all systems are operating normally and the six-member Expedition 34 crew is working on regularly scheduled science, maintenance and exercise. The crew also got together Wednesday afternoon for a simulated emergency drill to practice roles, responsibilities, communication and coordination.

Commander Kevin Ford started the morning installing background noise sensor kits in the Destiny laboratory. He also worked throughout the day on science hardware and reviewed a science experiment. He finally closed the U.S. window shutters before the docked Progress 49 fires its engines to raise the station’s orbit.

Canadian astronaut and Flight Engineer Chris Hadfield spent all morning and the early afternoon routing Ethernet and video cables for a new high-rate communications system in the Destiny lab. He then continued setting up a new experiment, ISERV, which is expected to provide useful images for use in disaster monitoring and assessment and environmental decision making.

Flight Engineer Tom Marshburn assisted Hadfield with the cable routing throughout the morning. He also worked throughout the day sampling water and air inside the station for microbes.

Flight Engineers and cosmonauts Oleg Novitskiy and Evgeny Tarelkin collected blood samples and stored them in a science freezer for the Immuno experiment. That study seeks to understand stress and immune response during long-duration microgravity missions and how to counteract their side-effects.

Flight Engineer Roman Romanenko worked maintenance in the station’s Russian segment checking hardware and replacing filters and cartridges. He also updated the inventory management system.

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