Recent Activity at the International Space Station

The inhabitants of the international space (ISS) station have daily research goals. NASA provides detailed outlines of their daily activities for interested parties. Large scale projects are often underway at this long-standing space residence. There are also some smaller goals that are just as interesting, however. Space travel can take its toll on the health of astronauts. They are now trying new methods to improve health while living in space. So far, this month has brought preparation for an exploration outside of the station, and new lighting experiments within the structure.

On February 15, 2018, the crew participated in preparation of the equipment necessary for space exploration. Preparation routines can be lengthy and are a major part of the day when necessary. Every step of the mission must be detailed in a timeline prior to its execution. Preparation includes tool checks, an SSU systems briefing, and an EVA briefing. This particular mission was scheduled for Friday, February 16, 2018, with a departure goal of 6:10 A.M CST.

Imagery goals for the day included images of the Caribbean and the Baja Peninsula. The video equipment and cameras (RED camera) work with a 6K hi-resolution. These images are often used for exploratory research and also distributed for use by the public.

Current residents of the International Space Station have spent time recording their sleeping and waking patterns in preparation for the Lighting Effects Investigation. With no natural lighting in space, circadian rhythms can easily be interrupted. Sleep deprivation can compromise immunity and mental well-being. Research studies depend greatly on the intellectual ability of the astronauts. Lighting changes are aimed at increasing mental function. The previously used fluorescent lights have been replaced with adjustable LED lights. Variable in strength and color, these lights are hoped to improve the sleep patterns and daily abilities of those residing on the ISS.

Constant documentation of daily activities keeps crews on the ISS busy, with little down time. Every detail of the day, health of the crew, and missions must be recorded. Information logs can be accessed on the NASA website.