International Space Station weekly report
After an almost six-hour spacewalk last week, the crew began the week with a little time off; then returned to science investigations, routine maintenance and equipment tests.
Expedition 12 Commander Bill McArthur and Flight Engineer Valery Tokarev spent the weekend restoring the station to its normal layout after the spacewalk. They dried their spacesuits to be ready for future spacewalks and reconfigured station systems.
The crew had off-duty time on Monday and Tuesday, and they completed post-spacewalk conferences with flight controllers and engineers. Other work included standard ground communications' checks with sites at White Sands, N.M., and Wallops Island, Va. Tuesday, McArthur transmitted a narrated video tour of the station, offering viewers a look at the interior, equipment and stowed supplies.
On Wednesday, Tokarev prepared the Progress cargo spacecraft docked to the station's Pirs Docking Compartment for a thruster test. Tokarev checked the Progress's attachments for leaks to ensure they were properly sealed. The Progress thrusters will be used to reboost the station's altitude tomorrow. This test will be the first time thrusters of a Progress docked to Pirs are used for a reboost.
The station's Elektron oxygen generator was reactivated yesterday. The unit was shut down for the spacewalk, and the station used oxygen from tanks in the Progress. Today, McArthur gathered data for the Foot/Ground Reaction Forces During Spaceflight experiment. It's designed to help develop ways to counteract lower body muscle and bone loss during long spaceflights. He wore cycling tights outfitted with 20 sensors, which measure hip, leg and ankle joint angles and lower extremity pressures during the experiment. It's conducted on four separate days evenly spaced through the six-month mission.