Routine Maintenance on Station While Ground Crew Relaxes

Wilmore works on CIR
Barry Wilmore opened up the Combustion Integrated Rack and pulled out gear to replace hardware on the fiery experiment device. Credit: NASA TV

Commander Barry Wilmore worked throughout the day Tuesday in the Destiny laboratory’s Combustion Integrated Rack replacing hardware that fuels experiments. Afterward, he drained a waste water tank in the Tranquility node then moved on to a Health Maintenance System test.

› Read more about the Combustion Integrated Rack

Flight Engineer Alexander Samokutyaev replaced a battery module in the Zvezda service module then repaired and photographed an air duct. His fellow cosmonaut, Elena Serova, checked Russian sensors that monitor air pressure then proceeded with disinfectant work to prevent microbial growth in the Zarya module.

A new trio of Expedition 42 crew members is relaxing at the Cosmonaut Hotel crew quarters in Kazakhstan. Soyuz Commander Anton Shkaplerov and Flight Engineers Terry Virts and Samantha Cristoforetti played games, had medical checks and planted trees during a traditional ceremony Tuesday.

Their Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft is being readied for its roll out to the launch pad at the Baikonur Cosmodrome on Friday. The new crew will launch aboard the Soyuz on Sunday for a near six-hour ride to the International Space Station’s Rassvet module.

› Read about live NASA TV coverage of the Expedition 42 launch

3D Printer Installed as Station Preps for New Trio

Wilmore Installs 3D Printer
Commander Barry WIlmore works on Monday to install a 3D printer inside the Destiny laboratory’s Microgravity Science Glovebox. Credit: NASA TV

Commander Barry Wilmore worked throughout Monday to install a 3D printer to get the International Space Station and future crews ready for self-sufficiency. Wilmore will work to calibrate the printer and set up a demonstration of the additive manufacturing technology.

› Read about 3D Printing In Zero-G

His fellow crew members, Flight Engineers Alexander Samokutyaev and Elena Serova, worked on routine maintenance tasks and cargo transfers in the station’s Russian segment. They also paired up for a cardiovascular exam on an exercise bike, sampled the station’s atmosphere and tested television downlink signals.

The next trio to join Expedition 42 is in Kazakhstan counting down to a Nov. 23 launch aboard a Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft. They are set for a near six-hour ride to the International Space Station where they will live and work until May 2015.

Soyuz TMA-15M Launch Schedule
NASA TV will provide live televised coverage of the launch of Expedition 42 on Nov. 23 at 3:01 p.m. CST. Credit: NASA TV

Expedition 41 Lands Safely in Kazakhstan

Soyuz Landing
The Soyuz TMA-13M carrying the Expedition 41 trio fires its soft-landing engines right on time at 10:58 p.m. EST.

Expedition 41 Flight Engineers Reid Wiseman of NASA, Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency and Commander Maxim Suraev of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) landed their Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft in Kazakhstan at 10:58 p.m. EST. The trio arrived at the International Space Station on May 29, and spent more than five months conducting research and maintenance activites.

Russian recovery teams will help the crew exit the Soyuz vehicle and adjust to gravity after their stay in space. Wiseman, Gerst and Suraev spent 165 days aboard the space station and clocked more than 70 million miles during their time in space.

This was the first mission for both Wiseman and Gerst. Suraev now has spent 334 days in space during two missions, including Expeditions 21 and 22.

The station now is occupied by Expedition 42 Commander Barry “Butch” Wilmore of NASA and Flight Engineers Alexander Samokutyaev and Elena Serova of Roscosmos. They will remain aboard the station to continue research and maintenance until the remainder of the Expedition 42 crew arrives later this month. NASA astronaut Terry Virts, Russian cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov and ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti are scheduled to launch from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, Nov. 23, (U.S. time).

Expedition 41 Lands
Screens at the Mission Control Center in Russia signify a safe landing for the Expedition 41 trio inside the Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft. Credit: NASA TV

Soyuz Completes Deorbit Burn, Expedition 41 Headed Home

Expedition 41 crew members Reid Wiseman of NASA, Alexander Gerst of the European Space Agency and Soyuz Commander Maxim Suraev of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), are headed back to Earth following the 4-minute, 41-second Soyuz TMA-13M deorbit burn completed at 10:09 p.m. EST.

The three sections of the Soyuz spacecraft will pyrotechnically separate at 10:32 p.m., atmospheric entry interface occurs at 10:35 p.m., parachutes will open at 10:44 p.m. and landing is targeted for 10:58 p.m. northeast of Arkalyk, Kazakhstan.

NASA will continue broadcasting on all its television channels and online at https://www.nasa.gov/nasatv until the crew members are safely removed from the Soyuz.

Expedition 41 Departs from Station in Soyuz

Soyuz Separates from Station
The Soyuz TMA-13M is seen intersecting Earth’s limb several minutes after undocking from the International Space Station. Credit: NASA TV

After spending 165 days aboard the International Space Station, Reid Wiseman, Alexander Gerst and Maxim Suraev undocked from the station’s Rassvet module at 7:31 p.m. EST to begin their voyage home. Suraev, the Soyuz commander, is at the controls of the Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft.

They will perform a separation burn to increase the distance from the station before executing a 4-minute, 41-second deorbit burn at 10:05 p.m. The crew is scheduled to land at 10:58 p.m. northeast of Arkalyk, Kazakhstan.

The departure of Wiseman, Gerst and Suraev marks the end of Expedition 41. The Expedition 42 crew members, Commander Barry “Butch” Wilmore of NASA and Alexander Samokutyaev and Elena Serova of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) will continue research and maintenance aboard the station.

NASA Television will air live coverage of the Soyuz TMA-13M deorbit burn and landing beginning at 9:45 p.m.

Here is the timeline for the Expedition 41 landing.

Sunday, Nov. 9

EST EVENT

9:45 p.m.                   NASA TV: Expedition 41/Soyuz TMA-13M deorbit burn and landing coverage
10:05 p.m.                  Soyuz TMA-13M deorbit burn (4 minutes, 41 seconds duration)
10:09 p.m.                  Soyuz deorbit burn complete
10:32 p.m.                  Soyuz module separation (altitude 87 miles)
10:35 p.m.                  Soyuz atmospheric entry (altitude 62 miles)
10:44 p.m.                  Command to open parachute (6.6 miles)
10:58 p.m.                 Expedition 41/Soyuz TMA-13M landing northeast of Arkalyk, Kazakhstan

Soyuz Separates from Station
The International Space Station is seen from the Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft shortly after undocking at 7:31 p.m. EST Sunday. Credit: NASA TV

Soyuz Hatches Closed

Soyuz Hatches Closed
Expedition 42 Flight Engineer Alexander Samokutyaev closes hatches between the Soyuz and the International Space Station. Credit: NASA TV

At 4:27 p.m. EST, hatches closed between the International Space Station and Soyuz TMA-13M. Expedition 41 crew members Reid Wiseman, Alexander Gerst and Soyuz Commander Maxim Suraev are preparing to undock at 7:31 p.m. NASA Television will air live coverage of undocking beginning at 7:15 p.m.

The deorbit burn is targeted for 10:05 p.m. and will lead to a landing at 10:58 p.m. northeast of Arkalyk in Kazakhstan. NASA TV coverage of deorbit and landing begins at 9:45 p.m. Watch live at https://www.nasa.gov/nasatv.

Farewell to Expedition 41
(From left) Reid Wiseman, Alexander Gerst and Max Suraev say goodbye before entering their Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft. Credit: NASA TV.

Watch NASA TV for Expedition 41 Farewell and Hatch Closure Activities

Soyuz TMA-13M
Night time view of the docked Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft.

Watch NASA TV now for the farewell and hatch closure activities as the Expedition 41 trio gets set to return home tonight inside the Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft… https://www.nasa.gov/nasatv

Here is a timeline of the Expedition 41 undocking and landing.

Sunday, Nov. 9
EDT EVENT
3:45 p.m. NASA TV: Expedition 41 farewell & hatch closure coverage
4:10 p.m. Soyuz TMA-13M/space station hatch closure
7:15 p.m. NASA TV: Expedition 41 Soyuz TMA-13M undocking coverage
7:30 p.m. Soyuz undock command sent
7:31 p.m. Soyuz TMA-13M undocks from space station
7:34 p.m. Soyuz manual separation burn
9:45 p.m. NASA TV: Expedition 41 Soyuz TMA-13M deorbit burn and landing coverage
10:05 p.m. Soyuz TMA-13M deorbit burn (4 minutes, 41 seconds duration)
10:09 p.m. Soyuz deorbit burn complete
10:32 p.m. Soyuz module separation (altitude 87 miles)
10:35 p.m. Soyuz atmospheric entry (altitude 62 miles)
10:44 p.m. Command to open parachute (6.6 miles)
10:58 p.m. Expedition 41 Soyuz TMA-13M landing northeast of Arkalyk, Kazakhstan.

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Med Studies as Departing Trio Trains for Landing

Station Trio Peers out from Cupola
(From left) Expedition 40/41 crew members Alexander Gerst, Reid Wiseman and Max Suraev peer out of the cupola.

The homebound Expedition 40/41 trio of Soyuz Commander Max Suraev and Flight Engineers Reid Wiseman and Alexander Gerst spent Thursday morning reviewing their Soyuz undocking and descent activities ahead of their Nov. 9 landing in Kazakhstan. Their orbiting Expedition 41/42 crewmates Flight Engineers Barry Wilmore, Alexander Samokutyaev and Elena Serova practiced emergency communication and coordination tasks.

› NASA TV coverage schedule of Expedition 41 landing activities

The crew also had time set aside for a variety of medical and physical science. Gerst conducted Ultrasound eye scans on Wilmore. Reid strapped on sensors and exercised for the Sprint study. Serova collected data for the Matryeshka radiation detection experiment. Suraev and Samokutyaev worked on cargo transfers and Soyuz preparations.

› Read more about Ocular Health
› Read more about Sprint
› Read more about Matryeshka

Expedition 42/43 crew members Terry Virts, Samantha Cristoforetti and Anton Shkaplerov are due to liftoff Nov. 23 aboard a Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft for a six hour ride to their new home in space. They were in Star City, Russia, for a news conference before going to Moscow for traditional pre-launch ceremonies.

› Read more about Expedition 41
› Read more about Expedition 42

Artery Scans and Eye Checks as Soyuz Readied for Landing

Alexander Gerst
ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst works in the Columbus lab preparing the Biolab for future experiment work.

ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst scanned his arteries then measured his body shape and size Wednesday. Flight Engineer Barry Wilmore joined Gerst for the scanning activities using an Ultrasound for the Cardio Ox experiment. NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman assisted Gerst with the Body Measures study.

› Read more about Cardio Ox
› Read more about Body Measures

Wiseman also scanned Wilmore’s retinas for the Ocular Health study. Gerst continued more work on the Aquatic Habitat in Japan’s Kibo lab module for the Zebrafish Muscle experiment.

› Read more about Ocular Health
› Read more about Zebrafish Muscle

In the Russian segment of the orbital laboratory, Commander Max Suraev continued packing gear inside the Soyuz TMA-13M spacecraft that he, Wiseman and Gerst will use to return to Earth on Nov. 9. Cosmonaut Alexander Samokutyaev assisted Suraev’s departure effort, checking the Iridium phones used in the Soyuz for emergency communications. Elena Serova participated in a psychophysiological evaluation, then inventoried gear in the Zarya module and Pirs docking compartment.

The next trio to launch to the station is getting ready for a news conference to be held Thursday in Star City, Russia, before going to Moscow for traditional pre-launch ceremonies. Expedition 42/43 crew members Terry Virts, Samantha Cristoforetti and Anton Shkaplerov are due to liftoff Nov. 23 aboard their Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft for a six hour ride to their new home in space.

› Read more about Expedition 41
› Read more about Expedition 42

Busy Period for Station Deliveries This Week

Space Station as Oct. 27
This is the configuration of the International Space Station as of Oct. 27. There are three spacecraft docked including two Soyuz spacecraft and Europe’s ATV-5.

The International Space Station saw a pair of space freighters leave while two more resupply ships were moved to their launch site waiting for liftoff this week. Europe’s Automated Transfer Vehicle-5 fired its engines this afternoon to move the station away from a possible conjunction with some satellite debris.

View upcoming launches to the station

Meanwhile, the six member Expedition 41 crew is moving right along with station housekeeping and an array of advanced science to improve life on Earth and in space.

Astronauts Reid Wiseman and Alexander Gerst drew their blood samples Monday. Barry Wilmore stowed a pair of U.S. spacesuits. Elena Serova, Russia’s first female cosmonaut aboard the station, sampled surfaces in the Russian segment for microbes and worked on a physics experiment.

Cosmonauts Max Suraev and Alexander Samokutyaev trained on rendezvous gear in advance of Wednesday’s arrival of the ISS Progress 57 resupply ship.