Resident Crews of the International Space Station (ISS)

ISS: Expedition 56

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Patch ISS-56 Crew ISS-56

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Logo Rodent Research VII

Crew, launch- and landing data

No.: 1 2 3 4 5 6
Nation: Germany
Surname:  Feustel  Artemyev  Arnold  Prokopyev  Gerst  Auñón-Chancellor
Given names:  Andrew Jay "Drew"  Oleg Germanovich  Richard Robert II "Ricky"  Sergei Valerievich  Alexander  Serena Maria
Position:  ISS-CDR  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer
Spacecraft (Launch):  Soyuz MS-08  Soyuz MS-08  Soyuz MS-08  Soyuz MS-09  Soyuz MS-09  Soyuz MS-09
Launch date:  21.03.2018  21.03.2018  21.03.2018  06.06.2018  06.06.2018  06.06.2018
Launchtime:  17:44:23.396 UTC  17:44:23.396 UTC  17:44:23.396 UTC  11:12:39.519 UTC  11:12:39.519 UTC  11:12:39.519 UTC
Spacecraft (Landing):  (Soyuz MS-08)  (Soyuz MS-08)  (Soyuz MS-08)  (Soyuz MS-09)  (Soyuz MS-09)  (Soyuz MS-09)
Landingdate:  (04.10.2018)  (04.10.2018)  (04.10.2018)  (13.12.2018)  (13.12.2018)  (13.12.2018)
Landingtime:  UTC  UTC  UTC  UTC  UTC  UTC
Mission duration:

Orbits:            

unofficial Backup Crew

No.: 1 2 3 4 5 6
Nation:   Canada
Surname:  Hague  Ovchinin    Kononenko  Saint-Jacques  McClain
Given names:  Tyler Nicholas "Nick"  Aleksei Nikolaevich    Oleg Dmitriyevich  David  Anne Charlotte "Annimal"
Position:  ISS-CDR  Flight Engineer    Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer
Crew ISS-56 backup Crew ISS-56 backup

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Expedition Report

Launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome.

ISS Expedition 56 began with the undocking of spacecraft Soyuz MS-07 on June 03, 2018 at 09:16:30 UTC. The former Expedition 55 (Anton Shkaplerov, Scott Tingle and Norishige Kanai) returned safely to Earth.

Following a two-days solo flight Soyuz MS-09 docked to ISS on June 08, 2018. Sergei Prokopyev, Alexander Gerst and Serena Auñón-Chancellor became the ISS Expedition 56 (together with ISS Expedition 55 crew members Oleg Artemyev, Andrew Feustel and Richard Arnold). With the arrival Expedition 56 became a six-person-crew.

Andrew Feustel and Richard Arnold performed the first spacewalk in Expedition 56 on June 14, 2018 (6h 49m). They installed a pair of brackets and high-definition cameras on the Harmony module that will help commercial crew vehicles align with the international docking adapter (IDA) at the forward end of Harmony. The cameras also will provide wireless data network access for experiments and facilities mounted on the ESA (European Space Agency) Columbus laboratory and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency Kibo laboratory. The crew also replaced a camera on the station's starboard truss.

On June 23, 2018, an ISS reboost was performed using Progress MS-08 thrusters. This reboost was to set up for Progress MS-09 launch planned on July 19, 2018. The engines started at 08:15 UTC and fired 208 seconds. The ISS got 0.42 m / sec. more speed. The actual parameters are 403.7 km x 421.2 km. The ISS needs 92.60 minutes for each orbit.

NASA commercial cargo provider SpaceX launched its 15th commercial resupply services mission to the International Space Station at 09:42:41 UTC on June 29, 2018. Loaded with almost 5,800 pounds (2,630 kg) of research, crew supplies and hardware, the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft (CRS-15 or SpX-15) launched on a Falcon 9 rocket from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station (CCAFS) in Florida. Dragon delivers several science investigations to the space station in support the Expeditions 56 and 57, including:
- A cellular biology investigation to understand how microgravity affects the growth, gene expression and ability of a model bacterium to transfer electrons through its cell membrane along bacterial nanowires it produces. Such bacteria could be used in microbial fuel cells to make electricity from waste organic material.
- An Earth science instrument called ECOsystem Spaceborne Thermal Radiometer Experiment on Space Station (ECOSTRESS) will provide a new space-based measurement of how plants respond to changes in water availability. This data can help society better manage agricultural water use.
- Included in the cargo is a physical sciences investigation that will enable U.S. National Laboratory research, which is managed by the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space. The goal of this investigation is to improve our fundamental understanding of physical interactions between soil and sediment particles of quartz and clay, commonly found in a wide variety of environmental settings such as rivers, lakes, and oceans, which has important applications on Earth for geologists and engineers. Additional biology and biotechnology investigations seek to improve understanding of endothelial cells that line the walls of blood vessels, the location of the hydrogen atoms in a molecule as a means to target drug design and delivery, and the genes in algae that cause growth.
- An observational pilot study with the Crew Interactive MObile companioN (CIMON) aims to provide first insights into the effects of crew support from an artificial intelligence (AI) in terms of efficiency and acceptance during long-term missions in space.
Among the hundreds of pounds of hardware flying to the space station is a spare Canadian-built Latching End Effector (LEE). Each end of the Canadarm2 robotic arm has an identical LEE, and they are used as the "hands" that grapple payloads and visiting cargo spaceships. They also enable Canadarm2 to "walk" to different locations on the orbiting outpost.
About 10 minutes after launch, Dragon reached its preliminary orbit and deployed its solar arrays. A carefully choreographed series of thruster firings are scheduled to bring the spacecraft to rendezvous with the space station.
On July 02, 2018 Andrew Feustel and Richard Arnold captured Dragon using the space station's robotic arm (10:54 UTC). Ground controllers then sent commands to robotically install the spacecraft on the station's Harmony module (13:52 UTC).

The launch of the unpiloted Russian Progress MS-09 occurred on July 09, 2018 at 21:51:34.452 UTC from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The freighter delivers 2,567 kg of food, fuel and supplies to the International Space Station (1,565 kg of "dry cargo", 530 kg of propellant in the refueling system tanks, 420 kg of water in Rodnik systems tanks, as well as 52 kg of bottled compressed oxygen, scientific equipment and components for the life support system, as well as containers with food, clothing, medical supplies and personal hygiene items for the crewmembers are stowed in the cargo compartment. Onboard is the new EVA Spacesuit Orlan MKS No.5.
The spacecraft docked only three hours later to the Pirs module of the space station on July 10, 2018 at 01:30:48 UTC. This was the fastest docking after the lauch of a spacecraft. Progress MS-09 will spend almost six months docked at the station before departing in late January 2019 for its deorbit into the Earth's atmosphere.

On July 10, 2018, an ISS reboost was performed using Cygnus OA-9 (now Cygnus NG-9) thrusters. It was the first commercial freighter used for a reboost. This reboost was was a test for upcoming reboosts. The engines started at 21:24:50 UTC and fired 50 seconds. The ISS got 0.05 m / sec. more speed.

Nearly two months after Orbital ATK, now part of Northrop Grumman, delivered several tons of supplies and scientific experiments to the International Space Station aboard its Cygnus cargo spacecraft, the spacecraft left the orbiting laboratory on July 15, 2018 at 12:37 UTC.
Alexander Gerst and Serena Auñón-Chancellor used the station's Canadarm2 robotic arm to release Cygnus, dubbed the SS "J.R. Thompson", after a leader in the aerospace industry.
Following its release, Cygnus deployed a series of NanoRacks customer CubeSats. The cargo craft then remained in orbit for an additional two weeks to allow the Cygnus flight control team to conduct engineering tests. Cygnus is scheduled to deorbit with thousands of pounds of trash on July 30. 2018, as it burns up harmlessly over the Pacific Ocean while entering Earth's atmosphere.
Cygnus launched May 21, 2018 on an Antares rocket from NASA's Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia and arrived at the station on May 24, 2018, carrying a variety of science and technology investigations.


Among the US experiments are:

Testing Navigation Tools Aboard the Space Station:
Sextant Navigation tests use of a hand-held sextant for emergency navigation on missions in deep space as humans begin to travel farther from Earth. The ability to sight angles between celestial objects offers crews another option to find their way home if communications and main computers are compromised.

Identifying Microbes Aboard the Space Station:
Biomolecule Extraction and Sequencing Technology (BEST) advances the use of sequencing processes to identify microbes aboard the space station that current methods cannot detect and to assess mutations in the microbial genome that may be due to spaceflight. The investigation sequences microbes directly from a sample with minimal preparation, rather than with the traditional technique that requires growing a culture from the sample. Insight from BEST could help protect humans during future space exploration and provide new ways to monitor the presence of microbes in remote locations on Earth.

Experiments of the European Horizons mission:

Myotones
Over the years, some incredible science has come about by accident when scientists have tested things on themselves. You've got to know what you're doing, or be adult enough to take the risk, so don't go experimenting with dangerous stuff at home. Alexander Gerst and his team will know what they're doing when they conduct the myotones experiment. It will be the first experiment to monitor basic biomechanical properties of human skeletal muscles, using a non-invasive, portable device. They want to find out more about the effect of zero gravity on the muscular system.

Immuno-2:
The Immuno-2 experiment will try to find out how the human immune system is affected, possibly weakened, by stress. It will combine biochemical and psychological factors, including stress from living and working in isolation, heavy workloads, and disrupted sleep patterns. Some experts say stress can cause debilitating mental illnesses - people get so sick they can't work. Immuno-2 may lead to new therapies.

ICARUS:
Failing self-experiments we humans have always preferred to put the lives of other animals at risk first. Fear not, however. No birds will be harmed with the ICARUS experiment. In fact, it may help humans understand animal migration a whole lot better. Birds will be fitted with small transmitters, weighing about five grams (0.18 ounces). Data from their migrations - including location, acceleration and environmental factors - will be sent to the ISS.

Cold Atoms Lab:
This one's a bit complex, but it's another first for ISS research, and it can't be done on Earth. So here goes. It's all about understanding the smallest things in our universe - yes, we're talking quantum physics. First, scientists will generate clouds of rubidium and potassium atoms. Second, they will use laser light to slow down the movement of those atoms. The atoms then get trapped in an "atom chip" or magnetic field trap, and that's where the slowest and coldest atoms will remain. When their temperature drops close to absolute zero, they behave like a giant atom called a Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC). And that's what the scientists will want to examine macroscopically - to understand these atoms at a level of quantum physics, or quantum mechanics. Quantum mechanics has been described as the "rules of the game" that describe how atoms and single particles of light (photons) behave.

MagVector / MFX-2:
The experiment was started during Alexander Gerst's first ISS mission in 2014 (Expedition 40 / 41). During the Horizon's mission, MFX-2 will be equipped with advanced sensors and operated with various samples, including nickel-iron meteorites and chondrites, meteorites that have gone largely unaltered since the beginnings of our solar system.

EVA data

  Name Start End Duration Mission Airlock Suit
EVA Feustel, Andrew 14.06.2018, 12:06 UTC 14.06.2018, 18:55 UTC 6h 49m ISS-56 ISS - Quest EMU No. 3006
EVA Arnold, Richard 14.06.2018, 12:06 UTC 14.06.2018, 18:55 UTC 6h 49m ISS-56 ISS - Quest EMU No. 3003

Photos

Soyuz MS-07 undocking Lake Titicaca
Saudi Arabia Soyuz MS-09 docking
Welcome crew Soyuz MS-09 EVA Feustel
EVA Arnold GRASP experiment
Soyuz and Cygnus Nano satellite
ISS reboost by Progress MS-08 Dragon SpX-15 capture
Wimbledon on ISS Cygnus departure

more Earth observation photos

more onboard photos

more EVA photos


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Last update on July 17, 2018.

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