NASA International Space Station, Space shuttle...

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Crew Does Maintenance, Science; Soyuz Launch Date Approaches

The International Space Station’s Expedition 24 crew began the week Monday with a variety of science experiments.

Flight Engineer Tracy Caldwell Dyson was scheduled to reinstall an old pump into the U.S. segment’s oxygen generation system, in an effort to coax it back into action to support the increase of the crew to six people which will begin Thursday.

Flight Engineer Mikhail Kornienko restarted the Elektron oxygen generation system in the Russian segment over the weekend.

Commander Alexander Skvortsov conducted an observation with the Rusalka experiment, which is a test of procedures for remote determination of methane and carbon dioxide content in the Earth’s atmosphere.

Skvortsov also assisted Kornienko in a session with the Russian Pilot-M experiment. Pilot-M tests piloting skill in simulations on a laptop under stopwatch control and studies the response of cosmonauts to the effects of stress factors in flight.

Caldwell Dyson took photographs of the moon for the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency educational program known as ISS Moon Score. The purpose of this program is to create a musical score using photos of the moon taken at different times in the lunar cycle, while the crew is floating naturally in the microgravity environment.

Following the rollout of their Soyuz TMA-19 spacecraft to the launch pad Sunday, Expedition 24 Flight Engineers Doug Wheelock, Shannon Walker and Fyodor Yurchikhin met Monday with the Russian State Commission of top space officials and conducted their final pre-launch Crew News Conference at their Cosmonaut Hotel crew quarters. Everything is on track for launch Tuesday at 5:35 p.m. EDT. The new crew members are slated to dock to the station’s Zvezda service module Thursday at 6:25 p.m.

Atlantis and crew complete a successful mission