Expedition 34...will perform two spacewalks under the Russian and US space programs.
Possible upcoming US EVA?
ISS orbit's reboosts are planned on December 13th, 2012 and January 17th, 2013. Probably, PDAM test will be performed on January 17th. It will be performed by Progress M-16M engines
There will be three quick rendezvous to ISS in 2013, they are Progress M-18M, Soyuz TMA-08M and Soyuz TMA-10M.
Besides all of the work that you folks do inside the station, there are times when crew members have to go work outside the station. Now, this plan could change but right now there is a plan for spacewalks during your mission. Give me a sense of what’s going on, because there’s a lot of spacewalks on the plan as well. Who’s going outside to do what and particularly what is going to be your role when it comes to these EVAs?Right. So it’s an International Space Station so we have international spacewalks. The Russians are planning for four spacewalks, and largely what they’re doing is preparing, their tasks to prepare them to receive a new module that will happen, that will arrive after we are gone later in the year—an exact date has been moving around—but many tasks to run cables, prepare the equipment for that module to come. The Russians have their crew complement for those EVAs they all rotate so I think each and every one of them will have the opportunity to get out the door, and those spacewalks are sort of spread out through the increment. Recently there’s been some discussion of adding maybe two or three U.S. spacewalks in the summertime, June-July time frame, we’ll see how it all works out. If we do get that opportunity, it will be Luca Parmitano and I on a couple main tasks. One of them, there’s some, piece of equipment called a Radiator Grapple Bars that are being brought up by the SpaceX that will be launching here in beginning of March, and these are large metal beams that are used to grab on to a radiator once it’s collapsed and folded down, if it needs to be repaired, so that a robotic arm can move in and grab it and take it where it needs to go. When the SpaceX arrives, these grapple bars will be placed on a piece of equipment called the POA [payload ORU [orbital replacement unit] accommodation].It’s a place to store…It’s a place to store these grapple bars. The key thing about the POA though, it’s a place to store any equipment, and if other pieces of equipment break, that’s a planned location for these major repairs to be held temporarily if it takes multiple spacewalks to conduct the whole replacement of whatever part has failed. So that location is one that we tend to protect and have it is available if we can. Our job will be to take these grapple bars off of the POA and go place them in, one on each side, port and starboard, of the space station. That’ll take a large part of one EVA. The other major task that we’re looking at lately the SARJ [Solar Alpha Rotary Joint], the solar array rotary joints, have shown indication that it’s taking more current to drive to motor to make them spin, which indicates that maybe there’s some binding or it’s not smoothly spinning around the ring.And these are the joints that are out on the truss, outside of which are the solar arrays that…Exactly.…rotate to follow the sun.Exactly. They’re big; I don’t know the exact diameter of them, but it’s on the order of probably 15 feet. It’s a very big ring and so the engineering team is right now looking at what’s the best way to tackle this problem but it will involve some type of cleaning or lubricating of these rings on both sides of the space station. The task in and of itself is much like squirting a caulk gun that you’d purchase on any home improvement store here, but it’s getting access to where you would squirt that bead of caulk that is the overhead involved with these spacewalks. Those are the sort of big ones. There are some other tasks that are no less important but can happen quicker. For example, there’s a piece of the KU band radio system that has malfunctioned, and right now we’re sort of one failure away to losing some of the key capabilities that that KU band gives us and so we’ll probably be replacing a transmitter and receiver controller box for that system, and there’s also some talk of a part of the system that gets the power from the solar arrays into the batteries, one key piece of equipment that helps regulate that function called an SSU, Sequential Shunting Unit, I believe, and that is looking like it needs to be repaired as well. A lot of little tasks and some big ones and it’s really exciting for me to think about the opportunity to go out there and help fix the space station outside.