Editor's note: Crews of Expedition 7, 8, 9, and 10 will visit with President Bush at the White House today (31 May). [PHOTO] ISS Expedition 7 Commander Ed Lu will also be in Washington from 6-7 June to participate in some post-flight events.
ISS News: May 2005 Archives
"The linkages to the ISS in the Exploration Transportation Systems roadmap include the ways in which the ISS can serve as a testbed for transportation trade studies and technology development. The ISS is not considered as a potential transportation node for the transportation stage from LEO to transfer to a destination."
"Update on Solid-Fuel Oxygen Generator (SFOG) "candles": As of tonight, since 5/20 a total of 9 candles have been decomposed on board (total attempts: 10 [i.e., 1 dud])."
"The crew burned one SFOG (solid-fuel oxygen generator) "candle" today to increase ppO2 (oxygen partial pressure). An attempt to burn a second candle, however, was unsuccessful. [Russian ECLS specialists have estimated that approximately 20% of the onboard SFOGs will not ignite, which is taken into account in the onboard O2 supplies estimates."
"The station is limited in its research potential by the fact that we are not able, on the station, to combine the appropriate radiation spectrum for deep space flight together with the zero G environment. It is those two environments together that are the truly relevant environment and we can't mimic those, but we can at least mimic the zero G portion."
Griffin Names Winners and Losers in Cost Squeeze, Science (subscription)
"Griffin also suggested "alternative configurations" that would allow NASA to complete the space station with fewer than the 28 shuttle flights now planned. "Some of the research [to be done] on the utilization flights could be deferred," he suggested."
"The station is limited in its research potential," NASA Administrator Michael Griffin told a Senate panel on space and science. Rarely enthusiastic about the station, Griffin has said NASA will complete construction to satisfy commitments the United States has made to the project's international partners -- the space agencies of Russia, Europe, Canada and Japan. But he said he would consider moving some funds from the station's scientific research to the development of the new space vehicle."
Editor's note: Duh. Of course the ISS is "limited in its research potential" - it is not yet complete! With only 2 crew on-orbit and the vast majority of its research hardware either sitting on the ground waiting for launch or in funding limbo, there is only so much science that can be done. Taking even more money away from ISS science than has already been drained to build the ISS will simply further reduce its ability to do what it was supposed to do in the first place. Why is Congress going to support NASA's next big long-term project (VSE) if the agency cannot be depended upon to meet the intent of its current long-term effort (ISS)?
"The machine's failure "is definitely not a safety issue at all, because we've got oxygen in three different supply areas," Beutel said. He could not specify the number of days of oxygen on board the station".
Editor's note: Uh, NASA does indeed specify the supply days below - as posted before USA Today's article was published
"Update on Elektron: The oxygen generator is off and considered failed. According to RSC-Energia specialists, an electronics box of its control system needs to be replaced for its restoration to service, and a new spare box will probably fly on Progress 18 next month. Until then, the station residents will use O2 from Progress 17P storage, which lasts until May 22 or 23, and SFOG (solid-fuel oxygen generator) "candles" afterwards. [There are currently 84 candles available on board, and with a two-person crew two of them are required each day. 18P will also deliver hardware for firing SFOGs electrically, as opposed to using the previous squib-type igniters.]"
"After today s major Elektron repair work, the O2 generator continues to be off. Presently (~1:00pm EDT) the O2 partial pressure (ppO2) is 157.6 mmHg. Total cabin air pressure is 753 mmHg. [As per plan, the crew worked for several hours this morning, performing major R&R (removal & replacement) on the electrolyzer by disconnecting the machine s Liquid Unit #5 (BZh-5) and installing instead the previously used BZh-6 (which had been checked out functionally on 4/6 & 4/8 by FE Sharipov and was found acceptable as a good spare)."