ISS Daily Summary Report – 4/09/2021

64 Soyuz Launch/Dock:  64S successfully launched at 2:43 AM CT from the Baikonur Cosmodrome with Oleg Novitskiy, Petr Dubrov, and Mark Vande Hei on board. The vehicle docked at MRM1 at 6:21 AM CT. The ISS crew complement has increased to 10 crewmembers and will remain so until 63S undock on April 17.


Astrobee/Gecko: The crew cleared the stowed items in the area and performed an Astrobee/Gecko functional checkout session. Assistive Free-Flyers with Gecko-Inspired Adhesive Appendages for Automated Logistics in Space (Gecko-Inspired Adhesive Grasping, or simply Gecko) uses the Astrobee robot aboard the space station to test an adhesive for robotic grasping and manipulating. Geckos grasp the surface of an object rather than features on it, providing many more grasping points. Adhesive grippers inspired by these reptiles, already proven to work in space, could allow robots to rapidly and controllably attach to and detach from surfaces, even on objects that are moving or spinning.

AstroPi:  In support of the European AstroPi challenge, the crew set up the AstroPi IR (infrared) in the Node 2 nadir window.  Two augmented Raspberry Pi computers (called AstroPis) flown to the International Space Station as part of British ESA Astronaut Tim Peake’s mission. The computers are both equipped with the mighty Sense HAT (Hardware Attached on Top) that measures the environment inside the space station, detect how the station moves through space, and pick up the Earth’s magnetic field. Each AstroPi is also equipped with different kinds of cameras:  one has an infrared camera, and the other has a standard visible spectrum camera.

CIR/ACME/CFI-G (Combustion Integrated Rack/Advanced Combustion via Microgravity Experiments/Cool Flames Investigation with Gases):  As a continuation of the on-going CFI-G experiment, the crew removed the 100% ethane fuel bottle and installed a 50% butane, 50% nitrogen fuel bottle.  Cool diffusion flames were discovered during droplet combustion experiments aboard the ISS in 2012, and this initiated a rapidly growing field of combustion research.  A cool flame is one that burns at about 600 degrees Celsius.  A typical candle is about three-and-a-half times hotter, burning at around 1,400 degrees Celsius.  Most internal combustion engines are designed using computer models that neglect cool flame chemistry, but ignition and flame propagation in engines depend on cool flame chemistry. Cool flame chemistry also has a significant impact on fuel octane and cetane numbers, whose understanding has large economic consequences.

Electro-static Levitation Furnace (ELF): The crew removed the current sample holder and stowed it for return.  The experiment which this sample holder supported has been completed.  The crew then installed a new sample holder which will allow the next experiment to begin.  JAXA’s ELF is an experimental facility designed to levitate, melt and solidify materials by containerless processing techniques using the electrostatic levitation method.  With this facility thermophysical properties of high temperature melts can be measured and solidification from deeply undercooled melts can be achieved.  ELF typically processes oxide samples, but is also capable of processing semiconductors, alloys, and metals.

Fluidics: Following the connector interference issues encountered yesterday, today the crew was able to re-clock a connector and successfully begin the first experiment run.  The measurement of liquid displacement within a sphere in microgravity relates to a given kinematic representation of a spacecraft’s fuel tank. The FLUIDICS investigation evaluates the Center of Mass (CoM) position regarding a temperature gradient on a representation of a fuel tank. The observation of capillary wave turbulence on the surface of a fluid layer in a low-gravity environment can provide insights into measuring the existing volume in a sphere.

HRF2 troubleshooting:  The crew and ground worked together on a software upgrade in an attempt to recover ground commanding capabilities for the rack.  However, the expected response was not seen from the ground and the remaining crew activities were aborted.  The ground believes the crew hooked up all the cables correctly and is working on a forward plan.  Human Research Facility-2 (HRF-2) provides an on-orbit laboratory that enables human life science researchers to study and evaluate the physiological, behavioral and chemical changes induced by spaceflight. Research performed using HRF-2 provides data to help scientists understand how the human body adapts to long-duration spaceflight.

RTPCG-2: The crew printed the “recipe” card, and then pipetted the appropriate amounts of solution into the sample wells on the experiment plates.  The wells were then sealed and the plates placed in a controlled environment in the SABL (Space Automated Bioproduct Laboratory) where conditions are favorable for crystal development.  RTPCG-2 demonstrates new methods for producing high-quality protein crystals in microgravity. Previous work has shown that microgravity produces high-quality protein crystals that can be analyzed to identify possible targets for drugs to treat disease. RTPCG-2 produces high-quality protein crystals for up to eight proteins for detailed analysis back on Earth.

Vascular Aging: The crew continued the on-going Vascular Aging experiment ops with blood sampling and a glucose tolerance test.  Emerging data point towards linkages among cardiovascular health risk, carotid artery aging, bone metabolism and blood biomarkers, insulin resistance, and radiation. Data indicate that aging-like changes are accelerated in many ISS crew members, particularly with respect to their arteries. As part of the Space Environment Causes Acceleration of Vascular Aging: Roles of Hypogravity, Nutrition, and Radiation (Vascular Aging) investigation, ultrasounds of the arteries, blood samples, oral glucose tolerance, and wearable sensors from ISS crew members are analyzed.


ISS Crew Safety Briefing: With the arrival of the 64S crew, all crew members participated in this briefing to familiarize the newly arrived crew with potential hazards and available safety measures on board the ISS as well as equipment required for initial emergency response. Some items covered were response to depressurization, fire and toxic release. The crew also practiced using the emergency egress route.

Completed Task List Activities:

  • Fluidics install/run
  • Dragon OBT
  • RPCG microscopy
  • Vacuum cleaner bag R&R

Today’s Ground Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

  • 64S docking ops
  • Payload ops support
  • MT translation checkout/survey

Look Ahead Plan

Saturday, April 10 (GMT 100)

  • No utilization activities


  • Crew adaptation
  • Crew handover

Sunday, April 11 (GMT 101)

  • Astrobee off


  • Crew off duty

Monday, April 12 (GMT 102)

  • AC touch, APM remove and stow, CBEF-L, Food Physiology, ISS Experience h/w consolidate, POIC overview, SERFE, Vascular Echo


  • CASA install part 2
  • Emergency roles & responsibilities review
  • WHC urine receptacle R&R

Today’s Planned Activities:
All activities are complete unless otherwise noted.

  • HRF Generic Saliva Collection 10 Minutes
  • HRF Generic MELFI Sample Retrieval And Insertion Operations
  • Vascular Aging MERLIN Item Removal
  • CSA Generic HRF Centrifuge Setup And Frozen Blood Collection Subject
  • CSA Generic HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection Operator
  • Vascular Aging Glucometer Reading And Drink Consumption
  • CSA Generic HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection Configuration
  • CSA Generic HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection Spin Conclude
  • Electrostatic Levitation Furnace (ELF) Item Gathering
  • Vascular Aging Glucometer Reading
  • CSA Generic MELFI Sample Insertion
  • Soyuz 748 ODF Ops. Start drying two space suits
  • ISS HAM Kenwood Radio Power Down in Columbus
  • Activation of Soyuz 747 gas analyzer
  • ISS HAM Radio Power Down in Service Module
  • Vascular Aging Glucometer Reading
  • Astrobee Stowage Clear
  • HRF Generic Saliva Collection Stow
  • USOS Window Shutter Close
  • XF305 Camcorder Setup
  • Electrostatic Levitation Furnace(ELF) Sample Holder retrieving and cartridge cleaning.
  • Vascular Aging Glucometer Reading
  • Vacuum cleaning area behind panels 405 and 406 of MRM1 interior
  • CSA Generic HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection Operator
  • Vascular Aging HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection Subject
  • MICROVIR. Glovebox-S hardware prep
  • Vascular Aging Glucometer Reading And Data Transfer
  • Real-time Protein Crystal Growth Recipe Card Print
  • CSA Generic HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection Configuration
  • Preparation of Soyuz 748 docking
  • Real-time Protein Crystal Growth Maintenance Work Area Preparation
  • Health Maintenance System (HMS) ISS Food Intake Tracker (ISS FIT)
  • CSA Generic HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection Spin Conclude
  • CSA Generic MELFI Sample Insertion
  • Monitoring Soyuz 748 rendezvous with ISS (MRM1)
  • Wanted Poster Extraction Tools
  • CSA Generic HRF Centrifuge Frozen Blood Collection Conclude And Stow
  • Food Acceptability Survey
  • Fluidics hardware installation
  • Real-time Protein Crystal Growth Production Plate Load S/N 2B2
  • Antimicrobial Coatings Touch
  • AstroPi Vis camera coverage
  • AstroPi IR setup in Node 2
  • On MCC Go Moding MRM1-Soyuz PEV to ELECTR CONTR position
  • Combustion Integrated Rack Bottle Gather
  • On MCC Go Soyuz 748-MRM1 interface leak check
  • Combustion Integrated Rack Upper Rack Doors Open
  • Combustion Integrated Rack Manifold #4 Bottle Replacement
  • ISS Crew departure preparation
  • Work Light Deploy in Airlock
  • Combustion Integrated Rack Upper Rack Doors Close
  • Polar Desiccant Swap
  • HRF Rack 2 Troubleshooting Setup
  • Soyuz 748-MRM1 hatch opening
  • ТПК-64S hatches open and PAO-TV-rep. Hatches open
  • Handover of the third spacesuit and gloves for drying in Soyuz 747
  • Start drying the third spacesuit (Soyuz 747)
  • Actiwatch Plus Watch Don
  • Fluidics Run 2 execution
  • Food Acceptability Survey
  • NanoRacks Rotational Dynamics Regulation Ball Deflation [Deferred]
  • OGS AAA Inlet Label
  • HRF Rack 2 Reset Switch Press [Aborted]
  • MELFI Overview OBT
  • Photo/TV RED Camera Disassembly
  • Food Acceptability Survey
  • Sidekick Power ON
  • MERLIN 5 Desiccant Swap
  • Safety briefing after Soyuz 748 docking
  • ISS safety briefing
  • Food Physiology Crew Diet Briefing
  • Galley Refrigerator/Freezer 2 Unit Reconfiguration
  • iPad 64S Prepare
  • Fluidics Closeout Activities
  • Terminate the third suit drying, start drying the third pair of gloves (Soyuz 747)
  • Galley Refridgerator/Freezer 2 Hardware Stow
  • Stow the first and the second spacesuits and gloves in Soyuz 748 after drying
  • Fluidics completion of data copy and T61p Laptop stowage
  • Payload Data Router Memory Card Exchange and Activation
  • Terminate drying the third pair of gloves (Soyuz 747)
  • Handover of Increment 65 Crew
  • Handover of the third spacesuit and gloves to Soyuz 748 for stowage after drying
  • Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Manual Fill Initiation [Deferred]
  • Atmosphere Control and Supply (ACS) Oxygen Supply Swap
  • Waste and Hygiene Compartment (WHC) Manual Fill Termination [Deferred]
  • MICROVIR. Hardware transfer from Soyuz 748 and insertion into thermostat at +4 deg C
  • BIOPOLIMER. Hardware transfer and setup
  • BIOPOLIMER. Photography
  • HRF Rack 2 Troubleshooting Disconnect
  • Astrobee Stowage Clear
  • Polar Desiccant Swap