Advanced Housekeeping Keeps Space Station in Tip-Top Shape

Soyuz MS-18 Crew Ship Relocates

The Soyuz MS-18 crew ship relocates from the Rassvet module to the Nauka multipurpose laboratory module on September 28, 2021. Credit: NASA

The Expedition 65 crew focused on a variety of advanced housekeeping activities today aboard the International Space Station. There was also time for robotics research, crew departure preparations, and filmmaking activities.

Five station astronauts had their hands full on Friday working on everything from electronics, cleaning, plumbing, and setting up temporary crew quarters. Some of the crewmates also had time to continue ongoing research, which is the main mission of the orbiting lab.

NASA Flight Engineer Shane Kimbrough installed computer networking gear and connected cables inside the Unity module. Over in the Tranquility module, NASA Flight Engineers Mark Vande Hei and Megan McArthur reorganized stowed items to make space for upcoming operations inside the NanoRacks Bishop airlock.

Commander Thomas Pesquet of ESA (European Space Agency) replaced components on the water recovery system located inside the Kibo laboratory module. Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Flight Engineer Akihiko Hoshide stayed busy in the Columbus laboratory module checking out science computers and then outfitting crew alternate sleep accommodations.

McArthur also turned on an Astrobee robotic free-flyer and tested its maneuvering abilities using a perching arm. Kimbrough removed a science freezer from the Cygnus space freighter and installed it in the Kibo lab. Vande Hei called down to NASA nutritionists and discussed his views about the station’s food menu.

The station’s three cosmonauts worked on the docked Soyuz crew ships and their complement of Russian space research. Flight Engineers Oleg Novitskiy and Pyotr Dubrov practiced Earth descent techniques inside the Soyuz MS-18 crew ship, and then tried on the lower body negative pressure suit that prevents fluids from pooling toward a crew member’s head in microgravity. Veteran cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov checked on life support and computer components inside the Soyuz MS-19.

All three cosmonauts also participated in filmmaking activities in the station’s Russian segment with spaceflight participants Yulia Peresild and Klim Shipenko. The two space station guests will return to Earth on October 16 with Novitskiy as he leads the pair to a parachute landing in Kazakhstan inside the Soyuz MS-18 crew ship.

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