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Astro Lab Chronicles: Blood, Sweat, and Gears With Expedition 70

The sun’s glint beams off a clear blue North Atlantic Ocean as the International Space Station orbited 261 miles above. In the foreground, a pair of main solar arrays drape across the right with the Canadarm2 robotic arm and its fine-tuned robotic hand Dextre extending from the left. Credit: NASA

Life science and spacesuit maintenance topped the schedule at the beginning of the week for the Expedition 70 crew. The orbital residents also pursued Earth observation and space manufacturing research aboard the International Space StationThe International Space Station (ISS) is a large spacecraft in orbit around the Earth that serves as a research laboratory and spaceport for international collaboration in space exploration. It was launched in 1998 and has been continuously occupied by rotating crews of astronauts and cosmonauts from around the world since 2000. The ISS is a joint project of five space agencies: NASA (USA), Roscosmos (Russia), JAXA (Japan), ESA (Europe), and CSA (Canada). It orbits the Earth at an altitude of approximately 400 kilometers (250 miles), and provides a unique platform for scientific research, technological development, and human space exploration.” data-gt-translate-attributes=”[{“attribute”:”data-cmtooltip”, “format”:”html”}]”>International Space Station (ISS).

Scientific Studies and Maintenance

Commander Andreas Mogensen from ESA (European Space AgencyThe European Space Agency (ESA) is an intergovernmental organization dedicated to the exploration and study of space. ESA was established in 1975 and has 22 member states, with its headquarters located in Paris, France. ESA is responsible for the development and coordination of Europe's space activities, including the design, construction, and launch of spacecraft and satellites for scientific research and Earth observation. Some of ESA's flagship missions have included the Rosetta mission to study a comet, the Gaia mission to create a 3D map of the Milky Way, and the ExoMars mission to search for evidence of past or present life on Mars.” data-gt-translate-attributes=”[{“attribute”:”data-cmtooltip”, “format”:”html”}]”>European Space Agency) started Monday morning treating blood samples then spinning them in a centrifuge for the Immunity Assay experiment. Afterward, he stowed the samples inside a Kubik research incubator located inside ESA’s Columbus laboratory module. NASAEstablished in 1958, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is an independent agency of the United States Federal Government that succeeded the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). It is responsible for the civilian space program, as well as aeronautics and aerospace research. Its vision is "To discover and expand knowledge for the benefit of humanity." Its core values are "safety, integrity, teamwork, excellence, and inclusion." NASA conducts research, develops technology and launches missions to explore and study Earth, the solar system, and the universe beyond. It also works to advance the state of knowledge in a wide range of scientific fields, including Earth and space science, planetary science, astrophysics, and heliophysics, and it collaborates with private companies and international partners to achieve its goals.” data-gt-translate-attributes=”[{“attribute”:”data-cmtooltip”, “format”:”html”}]”>NASA Flight Engineer Jasmin Moghbeli helped Mogensen start up the human research study that observes how microgravity affects cellular immune functions in blood samples. The pair would then spend the afternoon on a variety of life support maintenance tasks.

Astronauts Wear Headbands Packed With Sensors Monitoring Health

(From left) Expedition 70 Flight Engineers Jasmin Moghbeli and Loral O’Hara, both from NASA, wear Bio-Monitor headbands packed with sensors that monitor an astronaut’s health and physiological parameters while minimally interfering with their crew activities. Credit: NASA

Medical Checks and Equipment Maintenance

Astronauts Loral O’Hara and Satoshi Furukawa joined each other for chest scans and blood pressure checks with guidance from doctors on the ground. O’Hara from NASA first powered on the Ultrasound 2 device and set it up for data downlinks. Then she and Furukawa from JAXAFormed in 2003, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) was born through the merger of three institutions, namely the Institute of Space and Astronautical Science (ISAS), the National Aerospace Laboratory of Japan (NAL) and the National Space Development Agency of Japan (NASDA). JAXA performs various activities related to aerospace, from basic research in the aerospace field to development and utilization and is responsible for research, technology development, and launch of satellites into orbit, and is involved in advanced missions such as asteroid exploration and possible human exploration of the Moon.” data-gt-translate-attributes=”[{“attribute”:”data-cmtooltip”, “format”:”html”}]”>JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) took turns collecting the biomedical measurements for the cardiovascular portion of the CIPHER investigation.

O’Hara and Furukawa also took turns cleaning cooling loops inside a pair of spacesuits worn during last week’s spacewalk. O’Hara continued cargo operations inside the Cygnus space freighter while Furukawa began setting up breathing gear that measures aerobic capacity while pedaling on the Destiny laboratory module’s exercise cycle.

Soyuz MS-24 Crew Ship Docked to the Rassvet Module

The Soyuz MS-24 crew ship is docked to the Rassvet module in this photograph from the International Space Station as it orbited 267 miles above the Tasman Sea in between Australia and New Zealand. At left, is the Northrop Grumman Cygnus space freighter and one of its prominent cymbal-shaped UltraFlex solar arrays. Credit: NASA

Spacecraft Drills

At the end of the day, the crew members representing SpaceXCommonly known as SpaceX, Space Exploration Technologies Corp. is a private American aerospace manufacturer and space transport services company that was founded by Elon Musk in 2002. Headquartered in Hawthorne, California, the company designs, manufactures, and launches advanced rockets and spacecraft. SpaceX's ultimate goal is to reduce space transportation costs and enable the colonization of Mars.” data-gt-translate-attributes=”[{“attribute”:”data-cmtooltip”, “format”:”html”}]”>SpaceX Crew-7, including Moghbeli, Mogensen, Furukawa, and RoscosmosRoscosmos, also known as the Roscosmos State Corporation for Space Activities, is the Russian government agency responsible for space activities, including the development and operation of spacecraft, launch vehicles, and space stations. It was formed in 2015 through the merger of the Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and the United Rocket and Space Corporation. Roscosmos is responsible for Russia's space program and works closely with other international space agencies on joint projects, such as the International Space Station. The agency is also involved in a wide range of space-related activities, including scientific research, earth observation, telecommunications, and manned spaceflight.” data-gt-translate-attributes=”[{“attribute”:”data-cmtooltip”, “format”:”html”}]”>Roscosmos cosmonaut Konstantin Borisov, practiced undocking and departing procedures in the Dragon Endurance spacecraft. The quartet has been aboard the station since August 27 and is in the midst of a planned six-month research mission.

Roscosmos Activities

Borisov started his day setting up a camera in the Harmony module and pointing it toward Earth allowing students to remotely photograph landmarks on the ground. 3D printing was also on the Roscosmos research schedule as Flight Engineer Nikolai Chub tested the ability to make tools and supplies in space reducing dependency on resupply missions. Veteran cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko filmed himself during an exercise session for analysis then spent the rest of the day on standard lab upkeep tasks.

Source: SciTechDaily