Day 7: Saturday 27 October

27 October 2001

During the weekend the workload was slightly reduced to allow both crews some rest after a busy week on board the Station.

Claudie's main event today was a TV downlink to the Cité de L'Espace in Toulouse, from where a question and answer session was held with young students. As Claudie was busy with this, she was excused from the weekly wet wash-down of the Space Station that kept the rest of the crew busy.

Experimental work today included some data back-up activity, a reconfiguration of the LSO experiment, an Earth observation experiment that is looking for sprites (flashes of light) in the higher atmosphere and the continuing Plasma Kristall Experiment.

Later on, in the evening, Claudie was able to exchange a few words with Michel Tognini, another member of ESA's Astronaut Corps, who is currently on duty in the Mission Control Centre in Houston as CapCom for this mission.

CapCom is the only person who is allowed to speak to the crew directly during a mission regarding system procedures (i.e. what to do if something fails) or there are changes to system procedures on board. As this role requires considerable technical knowledge a CapCom is always an elected astronaut. The flight director at TsUP will transmit information to the CapCom who will then be solely responsible for relaying it to the crew on board. So a crucial role!

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