Space Station Crew Engaged With Science and Tech Upgrades, Earth Observations and Trainings

Russian Segment of the International Space Station

A set of remote South Atlantic islands, the Falkland Islands, peek through the clouds as the space station orbits 270 miles above Earth off the coast of South America. The Russian segment of the International Space Station can be seen to the right of the image, while a pair of solar arrays are partially shown on the left. Credit: NASA

The International Space Station (ISS) Expedition 69 crew has been busily engaged in station upgrades, hardware updates, and scientific research.

A week of station upgrades and science has kicked off on the International Space Station (ISS). The Expedition 69 crew kept busy on Monday, July 10, with hardware updates, science tech installs, Earth observations, and training.

NASA astronaut Stephen Bowen began his morning preparing for an upcoming water refill and science install of Plant Habitat-03B, an investigation that assesses if adaptations in one generation of plants grown in space can transfer to the next. In the afternoon, he installed new science in the habitat and added water to its reservoir. Bowen then spent his evening organizing and stowing day/night glasses which help protect astronauts from radiation.

NASA astronaut Woody Hoburg started his morning removing CubeSat deployers from the Multipurpose Experiment Platform located inside the Kibo Laboratory following last week’s deployment of six CubeSats. Hoburg then moved to install a Small Satellite Orbital Deployer for future mini satellites inside the Japanese Experiment Module.

Night Lights of the Southeast Chinese Port City of Xiamen

The southeast Chinese port city of Xiamen, on the coast of the South China Sea with a population of over 5.1 million people, is pictured from the International Space Station as it orbited 258 miles above during an orbital night pass. Credit: NASA

Meanwhile, United Arab Emirates (UAE) Flight Engineer Sultan Alneyadi prepared the Dreams headband for an upcoming assessment that will monitor astronauts’ sleep quality. Alneyadi then spent time with Hoburg to review procedures for forthcoming maintenance that will be completed in the station’s Tranquility module. He ended his day reconfiguring Extravehicular Mobility Units.

Flight Engineer Frank Rubio of NASA spent his morning, along with Commander Sergey Prokopyev and Flight Engineer Dmitri Petelin of Roscosmos completing training on station egress procedures. Following a morning training series, Rubio moved into the Window Observational Research Facility to observe and photograph Earth. In the afternoon, he analyzed water from the orbital lab’s Water Recovery System and took a look at surface and air microbial samples that were previously swabbed.

Following training, Petelin continued preparing a cargo unload plan he began last week for the upcoming ISS Progress 85 mission. Cosmonaut Flight Engineer Andrey Fedyaev started the EarthKAM software, a program that allows students to remotely control a digital camera mounted on the station to take photographs of mountain ranges, coastlines, and other Earth views that catch their eyes.

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