Crew Works Multitude of Research Before Fourth of July Weekend

Astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti replaces centrifuge components inside the Columbus laboratory module's BioLab.
Astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti replaces centrifuge components inside the Columbus laboratory module’s BioLab.

The seven Expedition 67 crew members are going into the weekend with a host of microgravity research and housekeeping activities. The four astronauts and three cosmonauts will also relax on Monday observing the Fourth of July U.S. holiday aboard the International Space Station.

NASA astronauts Kjell Lindgren and Bob Hines participated in a robotics test on Friday. The duo practiced simulated robotics maneuvers on a computer for the Behavioral Core Measures space psychology study. The investigation may provide insights into behavioral health and performance issues crews may face separated from family and friends while on missions farther away from Earth.

NASA Flight Engineer Jessica Watkins set up acoustic monitors in the Kibo laboratory module, the Tranquility module, and the Zvezda service module on Friday. Mission controllers want to ensure station noise levels remain acceptable.

ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti started Friday checking samples for the Soft Matter Dynamics fluid physics study potentially impacting the food, cosmetic, and pharmaceutical industries among others. Cristoforetti also serviced combustion research hardware and installed new software to maintain operations and support ongoing science inside an EXPRESS rack.

In the Russian segment of the orbiting lab, Commander Oleg Artemyev had a hearing test then moved on and set up hardware to measure activity in the Earth’s upper atmosphere. Flight Engineer Denis Matveev studied ways future crew members might pilot spacecraft and robots on planetary missions. Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov collected his blood and saliva samples for an experiment investigating how the immune system adapts to long-term spaceflight.

All seven space station crew members will spend Saturday on housekeeping activities such as disinfecting surfaces, vacuuming dust, and clearing vents for better airflow. Also on Saturday, the NanoRacks Bishop airlock will open up to the vacuum of space for the first time and jettison a trash container toward Earth’s atmosphere for a fiery, but safe disposal. The crew will then relax on Sunday and Monday enjoying a long Fourth of July weekend.

Thursday’s Research Explores Botany, Artificial Intelligence, and Immune System

Expedition 67 crew members are pictured enjoying pizza during dinner time aboard the space station in May of 2022.
Expedition 67 crew members are pictured enjoying pizza during dinner time aboard the space station in May of 2022.

The Expedition 67 crew members tended to plants and explored artificial intelligence aboard the International Space Station today. The four astronauts and three cosmonauts also split their day configuring a U.S. airlock and investigating how microgravity affects the human body.

NASA Flight Engineer Bob Hines worked in the Columbus laboratory module on Thursday afternoon processing radish seeds germinating for the XROOTS space botany study. The investigation uses soilless techniques, such as hydroponics and aeroponics, to nourish and grow plants for producing crops on a larger scale for future space missions.

Hines also joined NASA Flight Engineers Kjell Lindgren and Jessica Watkins configuring the NanoRacks Bishop airlock for its first trash disposal task this weekend. The trio prepared the airlock for its depressurization and closed its hatch in the Tranquility module after packing a trash container in Bishop on Wednesday. The container will be jettisoned outside Bishop towards Earth’s atmosphere for a fiery, but safe disposal on Saturday.

Today, ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti set up the Microgravity Science Glovebox and serviced components for the Intelligent Glass Optics space physics study. The advanced experiment uses artificial intelligence to adapt Earth-bound manufacturing techniques for the space environment. Results may improve Earth- and space-based technologies such as communications, aerospace, and medicine.

The orbiting lab’s three cosmonauts participated in a series of human research experiments today. Commander Oleg Artemyev attached sensors to himself to collect data about his cardiac activity while working in weightlessness. Flight Engineers Denis Matveev and Sergey Korsakov collected their blood and saliva samples for analysis to understand how the stresses of spaceflight, including radiation exposure and changes in sleep patterns, affect the human immune system.

Crew Works Autonomous Medicine, Garbage Packing on Wednesday

Astronaut Bob Hines monitors an Astrobee robotic free-flyer using smartphone technology to autonomously navigate and maneuver inside the station.
Astronaut Bob Hines monitors an Astrobee robotic free-flyer using smartphone technology to autonomously navigate and maneuver inside the station.

Wednesday’s schedule on the International Space Station encompassed practicing complicated medical procedures in microgravity to preparing to take out the trash 260 miles above the Earth. The Expedition 67 crew members also continued investigating a wide variety of space phenomena to improve life for humans on Earth and in space.

Future astronauts will need to work independently of mission controllers as they travel beyond low-Earth orbit to the Moon, Mars, and beyond.  As a result, NASA Flight Engineers Kjell Lindgren and Bob Hines trained to diagnose and treat acute medical conditions without ground support today. Hines practiced ultrasound exams on Lindgren’s bladder and kidneys for the Autonomous Medical Officer Support demonstration, or AMOS. The study aims to help crews become more self-reliant and reduce mission risks as communication delays increase the farther a spacecraft ventures from Earth.

The orbiting lab’s four astronauts are also preparing to take out the trash this weekend requiring procedures more complicated than packing garbage on Earth. Astronauts Jessica Watkins of NASA and Samantha Cristoforetti of ESA (European Space Agency) finished loading trash containers in the NanoRacks Bishop airlock today. They were assisted by Lindgren and Hines as they closed the hatch to Bishop and depressurized the airlock. The trash container will be jettisoned towards Earth’s atmosphere for a fiery, but safe disposal on Saturday.

Station Commander Oleg Artemyev of Roscosmos studied ways future crew members might pilot spacecraft or control robots on planetary missions for a long-running Russian investigation. Flight Engineer Denis Matveev continued configuring nanosatellites for a future deployment and worked inside the ISS Progress 80 resupply ship on cargo operations. Cosmonaut Sergey Korsakov spent his day on electronics and computer maintenance before studying international crew dynamics and collecting radiation readings.

Cygnus Leaves Station as Crew Maintains Research and Operations

Astronauts (from left) Jessica Watkins, Bob Hines, Kjell Lindgren, and Samantha Cristoforetti share a light moment during an interview with officials on Earth.
Astronauts (from left) Jessica Watkins, Bob Hines, Kjell Lindgren, and Samantha Cristoforetti share a light moment during an interview with officials on Earth.

The Expedition 67 crew said farewell to a U.S. cargo craft on Tuesday morning and is planning for the arrival of another resupply ship in mid-July. The seven International Space Station residents also split their day with a host of scientific and operational activities.

Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus space freighter completed its four-month cargo mission attached to the Unity module after the Canadarm2 robotic arm released it into Earth orbit at 7:07 a.m. EDT on Tuesday morning. The trash-filled commercial cargo craft will descend into Earth’s atmosphere and burn up safely above the Pacific Ocean on Wednesday. Cygnus delivered over 8,300 pounds of science and supplies when it arrived for capture and installation to Unity on Feb. 21, 2022.

The next resupply mission to visit the station is targeted for launch no earlier than July 14. The SpaceX Dragon cargo craft will be loaded with numerous new science experiments to investigate phenomena such as space-caused rapid aging, metabolic interactions in soil microbes, and cell-free production of proteins.

The station’s newest U.S. component, the NanoRacks Bishop airlock, was configured on Tuesday by NASA Flight Engineers Kjell Lindgren and Bob Hines. The duo removed cargo stowed inside the airlock and replaced it with a trash container that will be deployed this weekend outside the airlock to burn up harmlessly in Earth’s atmosphere. Bishop was delivered to the station aboard the SpaceX Dragon cargo craft on Dec. 6, 2020, and installed on the Tranquility module on Dec. 19.

Lindgren and NASA astronaut Jessica Watkins also took turns conducting a test simulating robotics maneuvers for the Behavioral Core Measures space psychology study. Watkins then joined Hines as they continued to film station operation videos to train future crew members on the ground.

ESA (European Space Agency) Flight Engineer Samantha Cristoforetti swapped samples inside the Electrostatic Levitation Furnace, an advanced research device that enables high-temperature thermophysics studies. Afterward, she conducted public affairs activities for ESA.

In the station’s Russian segment, Commander Oleg Artemyev worked on electrical and computer systems. Roscosmos Flight Engineer Denis Matveev configured nanosatellites for an upcoming deployment and serviced life support hardware. Roscosmos Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov filmed his portion of station activities then explored advanced Earth photography techniques.


Learn more about station activities by following the space station blog@space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter, as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

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Crew Readies Cygnus for Departure, Studies Botany and Cardiac Research

An aurora streams above a cloudy Earth as the International Space Station orbited 268 miles above the south Pacific.
An aurora streams above a cloudy Earth as the International Space Station orbited 268 miles above the south Pacific.

A U.S. resupply ship is being prepared for its departure from the International Space Station on Tuesday morning. Meanwhile, the Expedition 67 crew continued its space gardening and human research activities today to promote mission success and improve health on Earth.

NASA astronauts Bob Hines and Jessica Watkins spent Monday wrapping up cargo operations inside the Cygnus space freighter from Northrop Grumman. ESA (European Space Agency) Flight Engineer Samantha Cristoforetti joined the pair disconnecting power and ventilation systems and finally closing the vehicle’s hatch.

Cygnus will be detached from the Unity module overnight by the Canadarm2 robotic arm remotely controlled by engineers on the ground.  The Canadarm2 will maneuver Cygnus away from the station and release the cargo craft at 6:05 a.m. EDT completing a four-month stay at the orbital lab. NASA TV starts its live Cygnus release coverage at 5:45 a.m. on Tuesday on the agency’s app and its website.

Hines finished his work day servicing oxygen components on a U.S. spacesuit. Watkins and Cristoforetti also partnered together and filmed station operations to train future crews preparing for upcoming missions to the orbiting complex. Watkins later setup camera gear that students on Earth can operate remotely and photograph landmarks on the ground. Finally, Cristoforetti swapped batteries inside the Astrobee robotic free-flyers and worked on NanoRacks Bishop airlock maintenance.

Advanced space research is always ongoing amidst the constant array of visiting vehicles and other mission activities taking place at the orbital lab. Monday’s science experiments mainly focused on growing plants without soil, cardiac research, and Earth observations.

NASA Flight Engineer Kjell Lindgren kicked off another plant growing session for the XROOTS space botany study. He set up seed cartridges and root modules for the experiment to demonstrate using hydroponic and aeroponic techniques to grow edible plants in microgravity. Growing crops in space can reduce costly cargo missions and help sustain crews as NASA and its international partners plan missions to the Moon, Mars, and beyond.

Roscosmos cosmonauts Denis Matveev and Sergey Korsakov worked on cardiac research today exploring how the human circulatory system adapts to weightlessness. Matveev later worked on nanosatellites to be deployed on an upcoming Russian spacewalk. Korsakov also conducted ear, nose, and throat research. Commander Oleg Artemyev worked on Russian maintenance activities and later filmed station operations for audiences on Earth.


Learn more about station activities by following the space station blog@space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter, as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

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Crew Studies Aging in Space, Harvests Edible Plants Before Cygnus Reboost

The sun's rays burst above Earth's horizon as the space station orbited 264 miles above Western Australia on the coast of Shark Bay.
The sun’s rays burst above Earth’s horizon as the space station orbited 264 miles above Western Australia on the coast of Shark Bay.

Human research and space botany were the main research activities aboard the International Space Station today helping NASA and its international partners keep astronauts healthy on long-term missions. The seven Expedition 67 crew members also ensured the orbiting lab continues operating in tip-top shape at the end of the workweek.

NASA Flight Engineer Kjell Lindgren continued investigating why microgravity accelerates aging-like symptoms in humans. He processed blood and urine samples then stowed them in a science freezer for the Phospho-Aging study. Living in space affects molecular mechanisms that speed up the loss of bone and muscle mass. Results may inform countermeasures to keep astronauts healthier longer in space and improve the lives of aging citizens on Earth.

NASA Flight Engineer Jessica Watkins began harvesting radishes and mizuna greens growing without soil for the XROOTS space gardening study today. The experiment uses hydroponic and aeroponic techniques to grow edible plants so future crews can sustain themselves on longer spaceflight missions beyond low-Earth orbit.

NASA Flight Engineer Bob Hines activated the Astrobee robotic free-flyers today to test their ability to autonomously navigate and maneuver inside the Kibo laboratory module using smartphone technology. ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti spent her day servicing orbital plumbing components inside the Tranquility module.

In the station’s Russian segment, Commander Oleg Artemyev programmed a camera for an Earth observation study while Flight Engineer Denis Matveev transferred air and water from the Progress 81 cargo craft into the station. Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov closed out test operations of the European robotic arm then moved on to ventilation system work.

On Saturday, June 25, Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus spacecraft will perform its first limited reboost of the International Space Station. Cygnus’ gimbaled delta velocity engine will be used to adjust the space station’s orbit through a reboost of the altitude of the space station. This Cygnus mission is the first to feature this enhanced capability as a standard service for NASA, following a test of the maneuver which was performed in 2018 during Cygnus’ ninth resupply mission. Cygnus arrived to the orbital outpost in February and is slated to depart from space station Tuesday, June 28, where it will burn up harmlessly in the Earth’s atmosphere. NASA TV coverage for the unberthing will begin at 5:45 am EDT on NASA TV, the agency’s website, and the NASA app.

This reboost follows an initial attempted reboost on June 20 which was terminated early as a conservative measure due to system parameters that differed from Cygnus flight operations. Investigation by engineers showed that these parameters were acceptable for the reboost and the limits were adjusted for Saturday’s attempt.


Learn more about station activities by following the space station blog@space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter, as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

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Aging, Heart Studies on Station Ahead of Cygnus Reboost Test

As the Moon sets below Earth's horizon the atmosphere refracts, or bends, its light making it appear flatter in this photograph taken from the space station.
As the Moon sets below Earth’s horizon the atmosphere refracts, or bends, its light making it appear flatter in this photograph taken from the space station.

The seven-member Expedition 67 crew split its time with a variety of human research and lab maintenance tasks on Thursday. A U.S. resupply ship is also gearing up for a test of its ability to reboost the International Space Station this weekend before its departure next week.

NASA and its international partners continuously explore how living in space affects the human body. Numerous experiments investigate how space station crew members adapt to weightlessness during their months-long missions. Scientists on Earth gain insights into how the human physiology changes and inform ways to sustain crew health over the course of a long-term space mission.

NASA Flight Engineer Kjell Lindgren explored how living in space speeds up aging-like symptoms in humans today. He collected and stowed his blood and urine samples for the Phospho-Aging study that seeks to understand the molecular mechanisms behind the rapid loss of bone and muscle mass that takes place in microgravity. Results may inform countermeasures to keep astronauts healthier longer in space and improve the lives of aging citizens on Earth.

Astronauts Samantha Cristoforetti of ESA (European Space Agency) and Jessica Watkins of NASA worked throughout Thursday on station upkeep activities. Cristoforetti replaced centrifuge components inside the BioLab, a research facility that studies the effects of space and radiation on single celled and multi-cellular organisms. Watkins rearranged computer hardware and installed new science computer software in the Destiny laboratory module.

NASA astronaut Bob Hines, along with Lindgren, trained on a computer to remain proficient in SpaceX Crew Dragon vehicle operations. Hines also joined Watkins continuing to film and narrate station operations for downlinking to train astronauts scheduled on future missions.

Cosmonauts Oleg Artemyev and Sergey Korsakov attached sensors to themselves today monitoring their cardiac activity. Artemyev then activated Earth observation gear while Korsakov unpacked Russian cargo and worked on hatch sealing mechanisms. Flight Engineer Denis Matveev configured radiation detectors and measured the radiation environment aboard the orbiting lab.

NASA and Northrop Grumman have given the go for Cygnus to try another reboost attempt on Saturday that would lead to Cygnus potentially departing the station on Tuesday, June 28. The reboost is designed to provide Cygnus with an enhanced capability for station operations as a standard service for NASA.


Learn more about station activities by following the space station blog@space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter, as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

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Space Gardening, Digestion, and Robotics Top Crew Schedule

Expedition 67 crew members pose with fresh fruit delivered aboard the Progress 81 cargo craft on June 3, 2022.
Expedition 67 crew members pose with fresh fruit delivered aboard the Progress 81 cargo craft on June 3, 2022.

Space gardening and the human digestive system were at the top of the science schedule aboard the International Space Station on Wednesday. The seven Expedition 67 residents also worked throughout the day filming their activities, inspecting station hardware, and testing a new robotic arm.

Space agriculture is a way to sustain healthy astronauts on future missions to the Moon, Mars and beyond without relying on packed cargo missions traveling farther in space. The XROOTS experiment on the orbiting lab is exploring growing radishes and mizuna greens using hydroponic and aeroponic techniques. NASA Flight Engineer Bob Hines nourished those plants today and checked seed cartridges and wicks to ensure they germinate and grow.

Hines also inspected and photographed the condition of windows in the Destiny laboratory and the Kibo laboratory modules. NASA Flight Engineer Kjell Lindgren continued testing a headset that enables 3-D high definition holograms in real-time for immersive and innovative communication and research techniques. He also swapped hard drives on a station laptop computer.

Flight Engineers Jessica Watkins and Samantha Cristoforetti joined each other today inspecting and cleaning hatch components on the U.S. modules. Watkins also audited, inspected, and stowed hardware in the Tranquility module and the Quest airlock. Cristoforetti checked smoke detectors in the Columbus laboratory module and tested a specialized garment that can monitor an astronaut’s health wirelessly.

All four astronauts have also been filming their activities this week to prepare future crews training for upcoming station missions. The quartet have been recording, narrating, and downlinking videos documenting the operation of exercise equipment, network communications gear, and cargo stowage aboard the space station.

The lack of gravity affects the human body in a multitude of ways. Scientists observe station crew members during long-term missions to understand and counteract the undesired effects of weightlessness. Commander Oleg Artemyev and Flight Engineer Denis Matveev once again scanned their digestive system using an ultrasound device after breakfast. Researchers are exploring how organs and vessels in the gastrointestinal tract adapt to spaceflight.

Robotics testing is still ongoing this week in the station’s Russian segment. Roscosmos Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov continued checking out and filming the European robotic arm, the station’s third and newest robotic manipulator, and its ability to maneuver on the Nauka multipurpose laboratory module.

NASA and Northrop Grumman are continuing to work on a plan for Cygnus to try another reboost attempt as early as Saturday, June 25, that would lead to Cygnus potentially departing the station next Tuesday, June 28. The plan is being discussed with the International Space Station partners this week and a forward plan is expected as early as Thursday.

The reboost is designed to provide Cygnus with an enhanced capability for station operations as a standard service for NASA.


Learn more about station activities by following the space station blog@space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter, as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

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Crew Works Biomedical Science and Hologram, Robotics Tech

The island of Groix is pictured off the northwestern coast of France with the Atlantic Ocean beaming from the sun's glint.
The island of Groix is pictured off the northwestern coast of France with the Atlantic Ocean beaming from the sun’s glint in this photograph from the space station.

A host of biomedical studies filled the Expedition 67 crew’s day as NASA and its international partners continue exploring how living in space long-term affects the human body. The residents aboard the International Space Station also set up a 3-D hologram device and tested a new robotic arm.

The orbiting lab’s four astronauts took turns scanning each other’s veins with the Ultrasound 2 device on Tuesday morning. NASA Flight Engineers Jessica Watkins, Bob Hines, and Kjell Lindgren joined ESA (European Space Agency) Flight Engineer Samantha Cristoforetti and scanned their neck, shoulder, and leg veins during the morning with researchers on the ground monitoring the data in real-time. Doctors on Earth gain insight into how an astronaut’s cardiac, vessel, and muscle systems adjust to weightlessness.

Hines and Cristoforetti also spun blood samples in the Human Research Facility’s centrifuge before stowing them in a science freezer for later analysis. Watkins spent the rest of her day inspecting U.S. module hatch components and auditing hardware inside the station’s pantry. Cristoforetti worked on orbital plumbing tasks before reorganizing cargo to create more space aboard the space station.

Lindgren charged and configured a headset that enables 3-D high definition holograms in real-time for immersive and innovative communication and research techniques. Afterward, he launched a computer application beginning a session to demonstrate ways holoportation can be used for teleconferences and telemedicine, as well as assisting crew members with complex procedures in space.

Station Commander Oleg Artemyev and Flight Engineer Denis Matveev partnered together for ultrasound scans of their digestive system after breakfast. Researchers are investigating how organs and vessels in the gastrointestinal tract adapt to microgravity. Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov worked inside the Nauka multipurpose laboratory module testing the operation and mobility of the new European robotic arm.


Learn more about station activities by following the space station blog@space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter, as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

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Crew Wraps Week with Research Hardware Work, Cygnus Packing

NASA astronaut and Expedition 67 Flight Engineer Bob Hines is pictured during cargo operations and inventory tasks inside the Cygnus space freighter from Northrop Grumman.
NASA astronaut and Expedition 67 Flight Engineer Bob Hines is pictured during cargo operations and inventory tasks inside the Cygnus space freighter from Northrop Grumman.

Space research hardware kept the Expedition 67 crew busy on Friday as the four astronauts and three cosmonauts turned on free-flying robots, configured nanosatellites, and replaced a fuel bottle inside a furnace. The septet also split its day inside the International Space Station with Earth observations, spacesuit helmet work, and cargo packing.

The Astrobee robotic assistants were flying autonomously inside the Kibo laboratory module today streaming video of their activities to mission controllers on Earth. NASA Flight Engineer Bob Hines configured the cube-shaped Astrobees to test their ability to navigate and visualize the inside of Kibo on their own.

ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti swapped a fuel bottle inside the Electrostatic Levitation Furnace that enables safe observations of high-temperature phenomena in microgravity. She started the day partnering with NASA Flight Engineer Jessica Watkins collecting blood samples and processing them in a centrifuge. Watkins also photographed Earth landmarks in North America, Spain, and Africa while verbally providing descriptions to assist researchers on the ground.

NASA Flight Engineer Kjell Lindgren checked out components on a U.S. spacesuit helmet before continuing to pack Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus space freighter. Cristoforetti and Watkins both joined Lindgren at the end of the day as they loaded Cygnus with trash and discarded gear ahead of its departure later this month.

In the Russian segment of the orbiting lab, Commander Oleg Artemyev tested a set of nanosatellites before their future deployment. He also assisted Cristoforetti while she pedaled on an exercise cycle for a physical fitness evaluation. Flight Engineer Denis Matveev spent Friday servicing a Russian oxygen generator while Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov worked on configuration tasks and computer maintenance inside the Nauka multipurpose laboratory module.

The International Space Station Flight Control Team has decided to postpone the first limited reboost of the International Space Station by the Northrop Grumman Cygnus resupply vehicle from Saturday to Monday to refine the duration and magnitude of the activity in the wake of Thursday’s debris avoidance maneuver. The postponement will have no impact on station operations.

This Cygnus mission is the first to feature this enhanced capability as a standard service for NASA, following a test of the maneuver which was performed in 2018 during Cygnus’s ninth resupply mission. Cygnus arrived at the orbital outpost in February and is slated to depart from the space station later this month when it will be deorbited to burn up harmlessly in the Earth’s atmosphere.


Learn more about station activities by following the space station blog@space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter, as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

Get weekly video highlights at: http://jscfeatures.jsc.nasa.gov/videoupdate/

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