Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. Space Travel News .

Station Crew Readies for Cygnus' Sunday Arrival
by Staff Writers
Washington DC (SPX) Sep 24, 2013

NASA astronaut Karen Nyberg, Expedition 37 flight engineer, poses for a photo while floating freely in the Unity node of the International Space Station. Image Credit: NASA.

With the Orbital Sciences Corporation's Cygnus cargo vehicle gradually closing in on the International Space Station for the first time, the Expedition 37 crew conducted a final cargo and robotics review Friday to prepare for the arrival of the new commercial cargo craft.

Cygnus, which launched at 10:58 a.m. EDT Wednesday from at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia, was about 1,200 statute miles behind the station as of Friday morning, closing in another 82 statute miles with every orbit as it heads toward Sunday's rendezvous.

The two flight engineers aboard the station, NASA astronaut Karen Nyberg and European Space Agency astronaut Luca Parmitano, spent some time studying the rendezvous timeline before moving on to a review of Cygnus' cargo manifest. Cygnus, which is capable of carrying over 3,700 pounds of cargo within its 662 cubic foot pressurized cargo hold, is delivering around 1,300 pounds of crew supplies on this demonstration flight.

Parmitano and Nyberg wrapped up their preparations Friday with a final review of the procedures for the robotic grapple and berthing of the commercial cargo craft. Parmitano, with assistance from Nyberg, will be at the controls of the robotics workstation in the cupola to command the station's s 57-foot robotic arm, Canadarm2, to reach out and grapple the vehicle at 7:25 a.m. Sunday.

He will then maneuver the arm to guide Cygnus to its docking port on the Earth-facing side of the Harmony node for its installation slated to begin at 9:15 a.m.

NASA Television will provide live coverage of all the activities Sunday starting at 4:30 a.m. NASA also will post updates to its social media accounts. The public can join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #Cygnus.

Nyberg and Parmitano also participated in several ongoing medical studies Friday as researchers seek to learn more about the effects of long-duration spaceflight on the human body.

Parmitano, who has been following a carefully prescribed diet and logging his meals for the Pro K experiment this week, stored some urine and blood samples in the Minus Eighty-degree Laboratory Freezer for ISS, or MELFI, to preserve them for later study by nutritionists back on Earth. Pro K examines the effectiveness of dietary changes to lessen the bone loss experienced by astronauts in space.

Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin of the Russian Federal Space Agency began his day with the Kulonovskiy Kristall experiment, gathering information about charged particles in a weightless environment. He also cleaned air ducts in the Poisk Mini-Research Module and performed routine maintenance on the life-support system in the Zvezda service module.

Meanwhile, the three crew members who will return the station to its full six-person complement are now in the final stages of preparations for launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins, Soyuz Commander Oleg Kotov and Russian cosmonaut Sergey Ryazanskiy will launch aboard their Soyuz TMA-10M spacecraft at 4:58 p.m. Wednesday (2:58 a.m. Thursday, Kazakh time) on an expedited 4-orbit, 6-hour trip from the Baikonur launch pad to the station.

Hopkins, Kotov and Ryazanskiy will remain aboard the station until mid-March. Yurchikhin, Nyberg and Parmitano, who have been aboard the orbiting laboratory since late May, will return to Earth Nov. 11, leaving Kotov as commander of Expedition 38.

On Thursday, the Soyuz TMA-10M was "encapsulated" inside the third stage booster of a Soyuz rocket at the Integration Facility of the Baikonur Cosmodrome. This process set the stage for the third stage of the Soyuz booster to be mated with two other rocket stages Sunday in advance of the rocket's rollout to the launch pad in Baikonur on Monday.


Related Links
Orbital Sciences at NASA
Station at NASA
Station and More at Roscosmos
S.P. Korolev RSC Energia
Watch NASA TV via Space.TV
Space Station News at Space-Travel.Com

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Tech glitch delays space station berthing to Saturday
Washington (AFP) Sept 23, 2013
The attempted rendezvous of an unmanned cargo ship at the International Space Station will happen no earlier than Saturday following a technical glitch, NASA said Monday. The rescheduling postpones the berthing of the Cygnus capsule by one week and will allow time for three new ISS crew members to launch aboard a Russian Soyuz from Kazakhstan on Wednesday, the US space agency said. A sof ... read more

Arianespace and Astrium sign deal to begin production of 18 new Ariane 5 vehicles

Problems with Proton booster fixed

Decontamination continues at Baikonur after Proton abortive launc

Russia launches three communication satellites

NASA Rover Inspects Pebbly Rocks at Martian Waypoint

Martian Life: Good or Bad?

Communications Tests Go the Distance for MAVEN

Curiosity Rover Detects No Methane On Mars

Mission to moon will boost research and awareness

Mighty Eagle Improves Autonomous Landing Software With Successful Flight

Watch Out for the Harvest Moon

Chang'e-3 lunar probe sent to launch site

New Horizons - Late in Cruise, and a Binary Ahoy

Pluto Science Conference Exceeds Expectations

SciTechTalk: Grab your erasers, there are more moons than we thought

NASA Hubble Finds New Neptune Moon

ESA selects SSTL to design Exoplanet satellite mission

Coldest Brown Dwarfs Blur Lines between Stars and Planets

NASA-funded Program Helps Amateur Astronomers Detect Alien Worlds

Observations strongly suggest distant super-Earth has water atmosphere

XCOR And ULA Complete Critical Milestone In Liquid Hydrogen Engine Program

Boeing and Aerojet Rocketdyne Test CST-100 Thrusters

NEXT Provides Lasting Propulsion and High Speeds for Deep Space Missions

Wind Tunnel Testing Used to Ensure SLS Will 'Breeze' Through Liftoff

Chinese VP stresses peaceful use of space

China's space station to open for foreign peers

Last Days for Tiangong

China civilian technology satellites put into use

Amateur Astronomers See Comet ISON

NASA Highlights Asteroid Grand Challenge at World Maker Faire

Take a Virtual, High-Resolution Tour of Vesta

Team Attempts To Restore Communications With Deep Impact

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement