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Entries in ISS (2)

Tuesday
Feb262013

Second SpaceX Space Station Resupply Flight Ready to Go

The Dragon spacecraft stands inside a processing hangar at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station where teams had just installed the spacecraft's solar array fairings on Jan. 12, 2013. (Credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett)

The second International Space Station Commercial Resupply Services flight by Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) is set for liftoff at 10:10 a.m. EST on March 1 from Space Launch Complex 40 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

Carried by a Falcon 9 rocket, the Dragon spacecraft will ferry 1,268 pounds of supplies for the space station crew and for experiments being conducted aboard the orbiting laboratory.

The Falcon 9 and Dragon were manufactured at SpaceX headquarters in Hawthorne, Calif., and arrived at the Florida launch site by truck. The rocket, topped with the spacecraft, stands 157-feet tall.

The two-stage rocket uses nine engines to power the first stage, generating 855,000 pounds of thrust at sea level, rising to nearly 1,000,000 pounds of thrust as Falcon 9 climbs out of Earth's atmosphere. One engine powers the second stage to complete the climb to space. The 14.4-foot-tall Dragon spacecraft is capable of carrying more than 7,000 pounds of cargo split between pressurized and unpressurized sections.

On March 2, Expedition 34 Commander Kevin Ford and Flight Engineer Tom Marshburn of NASA are scheduled use the station's robot arm to grapple Dragon following its rendezvous with the orbiting outpost. Ground commands will be sent to attach the spacecraft to the Earth-facing port of the station's Harmony module where it will remain for a few weeks while astronauts unload cargo. The crew then will load more than 2,600 pounds of experiment samples and equipment for return to Earth.

Dragon is scheduled for a parachute-assisted splashdown in the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Baja California on March 25.

This SpaceX flight is the second of at least 12 missions to the space station that the company will fly for NASA under the Commercial Resupply Services contract.

Source:

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130225185751.htm

Monday
Nov122012

Astronauts on ISS Use interplanetary Internet to Test Controlling Robots from Space

NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) used an experimental version of interplanetary Internet in late October to control an educational rover from the International Space Station, NASA says. The European-led experiment used NASA’s Disruption Tolerant Networking (DTN) protocol to simulate a scenario in which an astronaut in a vehicle orbiting a planetary body controls a robotic rover on the planet’s surface.

Space station Expedition 33 commander Sunita Williams in late October used a NASA-developed laptop to remotely drive a small LEGO robot at the European Space Operations Center in Darmstadt, Germany.

“The demonstration showed the feasibility of using a new communications infrastructure to send commands to a surface robot from an orbiting spacecraft and receive images and data back from the robot,” said Badri Younes, deputy associate administrator for space communications and navigation at NASA Headquarters. “The experimental DTN we’ve tested from the space station may one day be used by humans on a spacecraft in orbit around Mars to operate robots on the surface, or from Earth using orbiting satellites as relay stations.”

The DTN architecture is a new communications technology that enables standardized communications similar to the Internet to function over long distances and through time delays associated with on-orbit or deep space spacecraft or robotic systems. The core of the DTN suite is the Bundle Protocol (BP), which is roughly equivalent to the Internet Protocol (IP) that serves as the core of the Internet on Earth.

While IP assumes a continuous end-to-end data path exists between the user and a remote space system, DTN accounts for disconnections and errors. In DTN, data move through the network “hop-by-hop.” While waiting for the next link to become connected, bundles are temporarily stored and then forwarded to the next node when the link becomes available.

Source: http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2012/11/astronaut-on-iss-uses-interplanetary-internet-to-control-robot-in-germany.html