Space station crew prepare for Boeing Starliner during human research and robotics

Illustration of the Boeing CST-100 Starliner. Credit: NASA

The International Space Station (ISS) is preparing to welcome Boeing’s new Starliner crew ship due to lift off next week for the company’s Orbital Flight Test-2 mission. Meanwhile, Expedition 67’s seven-member crew continued their human research and robotics work today.

" data-gt-translate-attributes="[{" attribute="">Nasa Flight engineers Kjell Lindgren and Bob Hines continued their training for the arrival of the targeted Starliner spacecraft for 7:10 p.m. EDT (4:10 p.m. EDT) on Friday, May 20. The duo reviewed the OFT-2 mission profile and rehearsed the Starliner remote command on a computer. The device that sends and receives data from approaching commercial vehicles, Common Communications for Visiting Vehicles (C2V2), was activated earlier this week. Starliner will lift off atop United Launch Alliance’s Atlas-V rocket at 6:54 p.m. EDT (3:54 p.m. PDT) Thursday, May 19from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida.

International Space Station flies into orbital sunset

The International Space Station flies into an orbital sunset at an altitude of 266 miles above the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of South Africa. Credit: NASA

Lindgren and Hines also started the day collecting and storing their blood samples for later analysis. Hines then activated the Astrobee free-flight robotic assistants inside the Kibo laboratory module. Lindgren then put the toaster-sized cube-shaped robots away after the autonomous devices had spent the day showing how detect and repair faulty post equipment.

Astronaut Jessica Watkins familiarized herself with Astrobee procedures and exchanged components in the Station’s Waste and Hygiene Compartment located in the Tranquility Module. ESA (European Space Agency) flight engineer Samantha Cristoforetti spent all day Friday testing the rHEALTH ONE medical device for its ability to identify cells, microorganisms and proteins in microgravity.

In the station’s Russian segment, Commander Oleg Artemyev worked throughout Friday to transfer water from the ISS Progress 80 freighter to the Zvezda service module. He also packed up old station equipment for disposal inside the ISS Progress 79 supply ship. Denis Matveev, a flight engineer, worked on the ventilation systems and photographed the condition of the panels at the interior of Zvezda. Flight Engineer Sergey Korsakov continued mobility testing of the European robotic arm attached to the Nauka Multipurpose Laboratory Module.

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