Mir status report from NASA

Philip Chien (kc4yer@amsat.org)
Fri, 25 Apr 1997 16:49:20 -0400

=46rom the horse's mouth.  This is today's status report, prepared by NASA's
full time public affairs officer stationed in Moscow.

Mir 23 Status Report
Mission Control Center -- Korolev
=46riday, April 25, 1997

Mir 23 cosmonauts Vasily Tsibliev, Alexander Lazutkin and Jerry Linenger
continued the repair and refurbishment of several Mir systems this week and
began preparations for next Tuesday=EDs space walk by Tsibliev and Linenger.

The Elektron oxygen-generating system continues to operate normally. The
cosmonauts are continuing to use minor amounts of gaseous oxygen from the
Progress resupply ship which is docked to Mir to augment Elektron=EDs output=
Russian flight controllers plan to maintain this method of oxygen
generation for the station until the Shuttle Atlantis arrives with a new
Elektron unit in May.

 The Vozdukh system continues to remove carbon dioxide from the Mir=EDs
environment without interruption.  The crew has been unsuccessful in
locating any leaks in a cooling loop in the Kvant-1 module that maintains
thermal conditioning for the Vozdukh, but it has not affected the Vozdukh=ED=
performance.  The cosmonauts confirmed that there are no leaks in, around
or behind the Elektron unit in Kvant-1.  Work on the cooling loop has been
temporarily suspended.

Thermal  loops  in the Kvant-2 module also continue to operate normally.
By redirecting some of the internal ducting from Kvant-2 to the Mir=EDs Core
module, crewmembers have been able to lower the temperature in the base
block by several degrees.

During the week, the crew successfully repaired leaks in the KOB-1
hydraulic loop in the Core module.  After removing air from the system and
performing pressure checks, they reactivated the KOB-1 loop, which
continues to operate normally.  The eventual reactivation of both KOB-1 and
a companion cooling loop, KOB-2, should restore normal temperature and
humidity in the Mir core module. Conditions are reported, however, to be
comfortable in the main living quarters of Mir.

Mir remains in an orientation which is assisting to cool the Core Module.
This attitude also limits power availability because the Core module=EDs
solar arrays are shadowed by the other modules.  This is of no concern to
flight controllers.

On April 17, the crew resumed its normal exercise regiment.  The cosmonauts
had performed only one hour of exercise a day since April 10.  Tsibliev and
Linenger also participated in the standard pre-spacewalk exercise
effectiveness assessment.

Tsibliev and Linenger began moving EVA-related hardware to the Kvant-2
airlock and checked out their spacesuits late in the week.  They will wear
new Orlan spacesuits during Tuesday=EDs spacewalk, which is scheduled to
begin at 11:50 p.m. Central time Monday night. The spacewalk is expected to
last almost 6 hours.

The spacewalk is designed to deploy environmental sensor packages and
radiation meters on the Mir=EDs docking and Kvant-2 modules and to retreive
two other experiments which have been collecting data on the effect of
micrometeorite impacts on the Mir for the past year. Due to Linenger=EDs wor=
in repairing Mir systems and the time spent in spacewalk preparations, some
of the final science work for Linenger=EDs tour of duty was postponed until
after the EVA.

Today is Tsibliev=EDs and Lazutkin=EDs 74th day aboard Mir since their launc=
in February, and the 103rd day aloft for Linenger, who is scheduled to be
replaced by astronaut Mike Foale on the STS-84 docking mission of Atlantis,
scheduled for launch in mid-May.

The next Mir status report will be issued on Tuesday, April 29, following
completion of the spacewalk by Tsibliev and Linenger.

*   *  *

Philip Chien [M1959.05.31/31.145//KC4YER@amsat.org]