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With 10 on board ISS crew gets to work
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With 10 on board ISS crew gets to work
by Clarence Oxford
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Apr 03, 2024

The International Space Station (ISS) was a hive of activity on Tuesday, with its ten-member crew - consisting of five NASA astronauts, four Roscosmos cosmonauts, and one spaceflight participant from Belarus - dedicating their time to cargo operations, spacesuit upkeep, and a variety of scientific investigations. This day exemplified the collaborative spirit and scientific curiosity that propels the mission of the ISS.

The day's operations kicked off with the crew dealing with the SpaceX Dragon spacecraft's cargo, anchored to the station's Harmony module. Loral O'Hara led the charge by releasing payloads secured during Dragon's journey to the ISS, a task that Matthew Dominick and Jeanette Epps followed by relocating additional cargo into the station.

The day's tasks also spotlighted the swapping of spacesuit components, with O'Hara introducing a new U.S. spacesuit helmet from Dragon's cargo and setting aside an older helmet for return. Dominick later prepared the upper torso of a U.S. spacesuit for its journey back to Earth for analysis, with Tracy C. Dyson aiding in the process and completing battery charging for an upcoming spacewalk planned by Roscosmos.

In the realm of scientific exploration, Mike Barratt facilitated the transfer of science equipment from Dragon to the ISS's EXPRESS racks, platforms that allow for a wide range of experiments, either astronaut-led or remotely controlled. His efforts broadened the station's research into protein crystallization, with new equipment set up in the Harmony module.

The Russian segment of the station was equally bustling, with the cosmonauts engaging in scientific research alongside their cargo-related tasks. Alexander Grebenkin observed Oleg Novitskiy's cardiovascular responses, while Novitskiy teamed up with Marina Vasilevskaya for Earth observation and the creation of educational content. Nikolai Chub focused on gathering his own biological samples to study changes in spaceflight-induced immunity.

As the ISS orbits Earth, preparations for the return trip were underway, with Novitskiy organizing the Soyuz MS-24 crew ship for its descent on April 6. Chub was involved in loading cargo into the Progress 86 resupply ship and updating the station's inventory system. The day wrapped up with Expedition 70 Commander Oleg Kononenko performing maintenance on the station's electronics, ensuring everything remained in top working order.

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