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Undocking, Docking Preparations for Station Crew

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Tue Apr 17, 2012 9:11 am via: NASA
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Expedition 30 Commander Dan Burbank and Flight Engineers Anton Shkaplerov and Anatoly Ivanishin conducted leak checks and other tests Monday of the Russian Sokol launch and entry suits that they will wear for their departure from the International Space Station and return to Earth aboard the Soyuz TMA-22 spacecraft. The landing about 56 miles north-northeast of the remote town of Arkalyk in Kazakhstan will wrap up Expedition 30 and is scheduled for 7:45 a.m. EDT (5:45 p.m. Kazakhstan time) on April 27.

Burbank also performed some maintenance work on a pump in the outpost’s Water Recovery System. Shkaplerov and Ivanishin cleaned fan screens in the Poisk and Rassvet modules.

With an eye toward the scheduled arrival of the SpaceX/Dragon commercial cargo craft, Flight Engineers Don Pettit and Andre Kuipers spent most of the day rehearsing rendezvous and Canadarm2 grapple procedures at the Cupola robotics work station. Dragon is slated to launch atop a Falcon 9 rocket April 30 from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, and the station crew is set to grapple and berth the supply ship to the Harmony node’s Earth-facing Common Berthing Mechanism on May 3. Dragon will be the first commercial cargo vehicle employed to deliver supplies to the complex.

Pettit and Kuipers also worked with the Space Sound Experiment in the Japanese Kibo laboratory. One of the pair created sound with a special instrument that was recorded with a video camera and an audio recorder.

Flight Engineer Oleg Kononenko took photographs of Earth as part of the Russian Uragan Earth-imaging program, which is named for the Russian word for hurricane. Uragan is a ground- and space-based system for predicting natural and manmade disasters.

Additionally, Kononenko transferred some waste fluids to the ISS Progress 46 supply ship. Progress 46 is slated to undock from the station Thursday for a destructive re-entry into Earth’s atmosphere.

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