Day 5: Experiments continue
ESA astronaut Roberto Vittori continued work on his experiments today. He concentrated on the ALTEINO experiment, with two sessions using the electroencephalogramme (EEG) – a device to register the electrical activity of the brain. He also started a second 48-hour run for the radiation spectrometer.
His Soyuz Commander, Yuri Gidzenko, was busy with the Plasma Kristall Experiment, a Russian-German-French cooperation to investigate transient order phenomena of dust particles in a gas environment, only visible in weightlessness.
A pass over Italy gave Roberto an opportunity to take some more photographs of his home country. These images will later be downlinked.
The crew reported no major problems with the Station’s systems. With six people now on board, the Space Station’s systems need an increased effort in terms of crew activity coordination and requirements for voice and video downlinks. These demands are handled by the Mission Control centres in Houston and Moscow. Communication time for the comparatively short running programmes of ESA astronaut Roberto Vittori and the South African Flight Participant Mark Shuttleworth are handled with great generosity.
The atmospheric pressure on board the Station is around 750 torr, comparable to the pressure at sea level on Earth. The temperature on the ISS is around room temperature, sometimes rising slightly due to the increased activity. The ISS is circling Earth in a slightly elliptical orbit of 411 to 389 kilometres every 92 minutes.