Tuesday, December 31, 2013

NASA SLAMMD: Medical Science for Crew as Year Nears End

NASA astronaut Mike Hopkins enjoys time in the Cupola, which affords the most broad views of Earth.

The six-member Expedition 38 crew is getting ready for another eventful year of scientific research, finishing up 2013 with medical research activities.

Both NASA and Russian spacewalkers also are cleaning up after three fast-paced spacewalks.

With one exception, all station systems are powered up and running normally following two spacewalks by NASA astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Mike Hopkins to replace a degraded cooling system pump module.

The new pump module is working well, which allows electrical systems cooled by that loop to be put back into full service.

The last string of power to the European Space Agency’s Columbus laboratory is scheduled to be brought back on line Tuesday.

The Caribbean country of Cuba is pictured in this high oblique image with a Russian Soyuz spacecraft in the foreground.

Hopkins started his day working in the Human Research Facility (HRF) and collecting biological samples for stowage inside a science freezer.

In the afternoon he used the HRF’s space linear acceleration mass measurement device (SLAMMD) to calculate his body mass.

SLAMMD subjects a crew member to a known force and the resulting acceleration provides a body mass measurement that is accurate to within a half-pound.

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