The Expedition 66 crew is wrapping up a workweek to continue its preparations for a Russian spacewalk as it packs a US resupply ship for departure next week. Orbit residents also had time devoted to eye examinations and the work of scientific instruments.
SpaceX’s Cargo Dragon spacecraft is scheduled to complete its mission to the International Space Station on January 21, 30 days after docking at the Harmony module’s space-facing port. On Friday, NASA flight engineers Raja Shari and Thomas Marshburn began loading the Dragon with a variety of cargo that will be returned to Earth one day after the craft was separated. In the afternoon, ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Matthias Maurer helped the duo organize and secure cargo inside the US merchant cargo ship.
Shari and Maurer also led two eye exams aboard the orbiting lab on Friday afternoon with NASA astronaut Mark Vande He as the subject. Maurer began the first test by scanning Vande Hei’s eye using an Ultrasound 2. Next, Shari looked at the veteran astronaut’s retina using standard medical imaging equipment, an optical tomography, which can be found inside the doctor’s office.
Kayla Barron, a NASA flight engineer, spent Friday working on experimental instruments throughout the American portion of the space station. In the morning I began recovering research components exposed to the harsh environment of space from inside the airlock of the Kibo lab. During the afternoon, Barron began preparing and photographing scientific equipment at several station units to prepare for the upcoming research.
Astronauts Anton Shkaplerov and Pyotr Dubrov spent the last day of the week trying on their Russian Orlan spacesuits, checking for pressure leaks and testing their communication systems. They will exit the Poisk unit on January 19 for a seven-hour spaceflight to equip and configure the Prichal and Nauka units.
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