September 9, 2010

Progress On Tagret For Friday Launch

The launch of the ISS Progress 39 cargo craft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan was postponed for 48 hours Wednesday due to high winds at the launch pad. The launch of the spacecraft was rescheduled for Friday at 6:22 a.m. EDT. Docking to the aft port of the Zvezda service module has been rescheduled for Sunday at 7:58 a.m. with NASA TV coverage set to begin at 7:15 a.m. The postponement will have no impact on station operations.

ISS Progress 39 will bring to the orbiting complex 1,918 pounds of propellant, 110 pounds of oxygen, 375 pounds of water and 2,645 pounds of spare parts, experiment hardware and other supplies for the station's six crew members.

Meanwhile aboard the station Thursday, Expedition 24 Commander Alexander Skvortsov worked in the Russian segment of the station, performing scheduled maintenance and monitoring its environmental and life support systems. He also conducted an observation with the Rusalka experiment, which is a test of procedures for remote determination of methane and carbon dioxide content in the Earth's atmosphere.

Flight Engineer Tracy Caldwell Dyson worked with the VO2max experiment, which involves recording the oxygen intake of exercising crew members before, during and after their stays aboard the station to evaluate and document the changes in their aerobic capacity.

Flight Engineer Doug Wheelock collected blood samples for the Sodium Loading in Microgravity (SOLO) experiment that studies the mechanisms of fluid and salt retention in the body during long-duration spaceflight.

Flight Engineer Fyodor Yurchikhin set up and used video and photography equipment in support of the Uragan experiment. Uragan is a long-term Russian experiment that documents the changes that occur on Earth after catastrophes such as hurricanes and man-made disasters.

Later, Caldwell Dyson and Wheelock joined Flight Engineer Shannon Walker during an in-flight educational event, talking with students at the Science Center of Pinellas County in St. Petersburg, Fla. The astronauts answered a variety of questions about living and working aboard the orbiting complex.

In preparation for their return to Earth, Skvortsov and Flight Engineer Mikhail Kornienko continued to gather and stow items onto the docked Soyuz TMA-18 spacecraft. Skvortsov and Kornienko will be joined by Caldwell Dyson for their return to Earth when they undock from the station Sept. 23, landing in Kazakhstan a few hours later. Their undocking will mark the official end of Expedition 24 and the beginning of Expedition 25.


Image Caption: Filled with trash and discarded items, the unpiloted ISS Progress 38 supply vehicle departed from the International Space Station at 7:22 a.m. (EDT) on Aug. 31, 2010. Russian flight controllers conduct thruster tests with the Progress to gather engineering data until it deorbited and burned up in Earth's atmosphere over the Pacific Ocean. Its departure cleared the way for the arrival of the next Russian resupply vehicle, ISS Progress 39, which will launch Sept. 10 and dock Sept. 12, delivering 2.5 tons of food, fuel and supplies for the Expedition 24 crew. Image Credit: NASA


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