CHRISTMAS IN SPACE 50 YEARS LATER

The Expedition 58 crew will spend Christmas in space for the first time since the Apollo 8 crew exactly 50 years ago.

CHRISTMAS IN SPACE FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 50 YEARS

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The Expedition 58 crew will spend Christmas in space for the first time since the Apollo 8 crew exactly 50 years ago.

Three people from the U.S., Canada and Russia are orbiting Earth today getting ready to observe Christmas and experience New Year’s Eve from space aboard the International Space Station. Back on Earth, another three station crew members have returned to their home bases just 24 hours after completing a 197-day mission aboard the orbital lab.

HISTORY MADE IN A MUCH LARGER SOYUZ SPACESHIP

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Christmas was spent on Apollo 8 in 1968. This was a much smaller spaceship than is used today to transport astronauts and cosmonauts to the International Space Station

The first time three humans spent Christmas in space was 50 years ago in 1968 during Apollo 8 and was also the first time a crew orbited the Moon. This Christmas astronauts Anne McClain of NASA and David Saint-Jacques of the Canadian Space Agency with cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko of Roscosmos will be soaring about 250 miles above the Earth’s surface in a much larger spacecraft. The Expedition 58 trio will share a traditional meal aboard the orbital lab, share gifts and call down to family during their off-duty day.

Kononenko is beginning his fourth mission on the station and will spend his second Christmas in space. McClain and Saint-Jacques are getting used to life in space for the first time and will return to Earth in June with Kononenko.

NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor returned to Houston late Thursday just one day after landing in Kazakhstan wrapping up her six-and-a-half month stay aboard the orbital lab. She parachuted to Earth inside the Soyuz MS-09 spacecraft with her Expedition 57 crewmates Alexander Gerst of ESA (European Space Agency) and Sergey Prokopyev of Roscosmos.

Written By: Mark Garcia NASA

FACTS AND FIGURES OF THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION

Mark Garcia, NASA Editor, updated the facts, figures, and some history of the space station with expanded artistic rendering in the image below. Universal Digest is glad to add this information in addition to the standard article procedure. Because of the historic situation of astronauts not having been in a spaceship by itself since the moon orbits 50 years ago, it is a good time to provide this to the readers.

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This is a detailed expansion of the International Space Station. Mark Garcia of NASA just updated the facts, figures and history in November of 2018.

SPACE STATION DETAIL OF FACTS, FIGURES, AND HISTORY

230 individuals from 18 countries have visited the International Space Station

The space station has been continuously occupied since November 2000

An international crew of six people live and work while traveling at a speed of five miles per second, orbiting Earth about every 90 minutes.
In 24 hours, the space station makes 16 orbits of Earth, traveling through 16 sunrises and sunsets

Peggy Whitson set the record for spending the most total time living and working in space at 665 days on Sept. 2, 2017
The acre of solar panels that power the station means sometimes you can look up in the sky at dawn or dusk and see the spaceship flying over your home, even if you live in a big city. Find sighting opportunities at http://spotthestation.nasa.gov

The living and working space in the station is larger than a six-bedroom house (and has six sleeping quarters, two bathrooms, a gym, and a 360-degree view bay window).
To mitigate the loss of muscle and bone mass in the human body in microgravity, the astronauts work out at least two hours a day.

Astronauts and cosmonauts have conducted more than 205 spacewalks (and counting!) for space station construction, maintenance and repair since December 1998

The solar array wingspan (240 feet) is about the same length as the world’s largest passenger aircraft, the Airbus A380.

The large modules and other pieces of the station were delivered on 42 assembly flights, 37 on the U.S. space shuttles and five on Russian Proton/Soyuz rockets.

The space station is 357 feet end-to-end, one yard shy of the full length of an American football field including the end zones.

Eight miles of wire connects the electrical power system aboard the space station.

The 55-foot robotic Canadarm2 has seven different joints and two end-effectors, or hands, and is used to move entire modules, deploy science experiments and even transport spacewalking astronauts.

Six spaceships can be connected to the space station at once.

A spacecraft can arrive at the space station as soon as six hours after launching from Earth.

Four different cargo spacecraft deliver science, cargo and supplies: Orbital ATK’s Cygnus, SpaceX’s Dragon, JAXA’s HTV, and the Russian Progress.

Through Expedition 52, the microgravity laboratory has hosted more than 2,400 research investigations from researchers in more than 103 countries.

The station’s orbital path takes it over 90 percent of the Earth’s population, with astronauts taking millions of images of the planet below. Check them out at https://eol.jsc.nasa.gov

More than 20 different research payloads can be hosted outside the station at once, including Earth sensing equipment, materials science payloads, particle physics experiments like the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer-02 and more.

The space station travels an equivalent distance to the Moon and back in about a day.

The Water Recovery System reduces crew dependence on water delivered by a cargo spacecraft by 65 percent – from about 1 gallon a day to a third of a gallon.

On-orbit software monitors approximately 350,000 sensors, ensuring station and crew health and safety.

The space station has an internal pressurized volume equal that of a Boeing 747.

More than 50 computers control the systems on the space station.

More than 3 million lines of software code on the ground support more than 1.5 million lines of flight software code.

In the International Space Station’s U.S. segment alone, more than 1.5 million lines of flight software code run on 44 computers communicating via 100 data networks transferring 400,000 signals (e.g. pressure or temperature measurements, valve positions, etc.).

SPACE STATION SIZE AND MASS DETAIL

International Space Station Size & Mass:

Pressurized Module Length: 240 feet (73 meters)
Truss Length: 357.5 feet (109 meters)
Solar Array Length: 239.4 feet (73 meters)
Mass: 925,335 pounds (419,725 kilograms)
Habitable Volume: 13,696 cubic feet (388 cubic meters) not including visiting vehicles
Pressurized Volume: 32,333 cubic feet (916 cubic meters)
With BEAM expanded: 32,898 cubic feet (932 cubic meters)
Power Generation: 8 solar arrays provide 75 to 90 kilowatts of power
Lines of Computer Code: approximately 2.3 million

Last Updated: Nov. 5, 2018

Editor: Mark Garcia NASA


UNIVERSAL DIGEST is pleased to be a conduit for some of NASA’s projects and work. This article and some others were written by NASA and are mostly unedited. We do not claim credit, we simply want to make them more available to the general public.

Universal Digest is committed to providing its audience with the most timely news reporting; however, there are times where this is not possible. Therefore, a concise reporting of historical news occurrences are published, as soon as, is practicable.

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STATION CREW GEARING UP FOR 2017

The Expedition 50 crew enjoys an international Christmas dinner aboard the space station while gearing up for space walks and science in 2017.

With 2017 just around the corner, the space station crew is gearing up for January space walks, maintenance, and science research.

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The Expedition 50 crew enjoys an international Christmas dinner aboard the space station while gearing up for space walks and science in 2017.

The Expedition 50 crew aboard the International Space Station spent the week working on an array of science, maintenance and spacewalking preparation to close out 2016.

Kimbrough and Flight Engineers Peggy Whitson and Thomas Pesquet are getting ready for a pair of spacewalks on Jan. 6 and 13. The spacewalks, in conjunction with remote robotics work, will complete the replacement of old nickel-hydrogen batteries with new lithium-ion batteries on the station’s truss structure. The crew performed a loop scrub on their spacesuits, reviewed spacewalking procedures and did a fit verification with their suits on Friday.

The crew participated in a variety of science experiments during the week including the Fluid Shifts study, which investigates the causes for  lasting physical changes to astronauts’ eyes; performed the final harvest of the Outredgous Romaine Lettuce from the Veggie facility, which is further demonstrating the ability to grow fresh plants in space to supplement crew diets; and continued preparing the station’s Combustion Integrated Rack (CIR) for the upcoming Cool Flames Investigation, which will provide new insight into the phenomenon where some types of fuels initially burn very hot, then appear to go out — but they continue burning at a much lower temperature, with no visible flames (cool flames).

Going into New Year’s weekend, the crew will enjoy their typical off-duty time on Saturday and Sunday. They also will have Monday, Jan. 2 off.

Written By: David Huot NASA


UNIVERSAL DIGEST is pleased to be a conduit for some of NASA’s projects and work. This article and some others were written by NASA and are mostly unedited. We do not claim credit, we simply want to make them more available to the general public.

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NORAD TRACKING SANTA 2016!

NORAD is tracking Santa as he makes his way around the world delivering presents to the population!

NORAD IS ACTIVE – A SANTA WATCH!

Universal Digest presents year two of its Santa Watch thanks to NORAD producing its ongoing visual trek as jolly old St. Nick delivers presents worldwide!

How did this NORAD idea come about? A colonel actually answered the “Red Phone” and a child was on the phone asking, “Where is Santa?” The idea took hold so now NORADSANTA.org exists to provide the beautiful video with Christmas song accompaniment. Enjoy!

Yes, people, Santa Claus is on his way via NORAD global tracking! Please inform everyone, especially your children! The time is at hand and now one must recollect on whether one was naughty or nice this past year!

Hey, children and adults alike, everywhere on our earth, please enjoy this fantastic live feed tracking our very own, lovable St. Nick, as he travels the world delivering gifts to everyone!

Please click on the official NORAD tracking website below! This is the latest version that continues the organization’s 60-year tradition of tracking Santa Claus as he treks the globe delivering presents and good cheer to people who really need it. As technology improves, so does everyone’s opportunities to enjoy this cheerful music and video presentation:

SANTA WATCH SPECTACULAR!

Please enjoy the ongoing live feed above. These are some snippet pictures of Santa on his way around the world:

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NORAD is tracking Santa as he makes his way around the world delivering presents to the population!

And more:

NORAD SANTA TREK 1
NORAD SANTA TREK 2
NORAD SANTA TREK 3
NORAD SANTA TREK 4
NORAD SANTA TREK 5

May everyone worldwide find the joy in sharing, giving, and recognizing that every moment one can bring a positive word, action, statement and/or gesture in caring for the human condition in a world where so many are not able to find this kind of cheer to bring happiness to others. Let us all take time to not only recognize that negatives exists, let us actively do our parts, in whatever way we can to overshadow sadness, evil, and war with happiness, goodness, and peace, not just today or tomorrow, but every day from now on.

No one says it is easy or there is an immediate solution. Remember, solutions start with a first step and by staying the course, forging ahead to make life better for everyone we can. When we can cherish every moment to care and love, without reservation, we cannot lose. One day, we will look back and see all this positive work has born the fruit of happiness, now and in the future for mankind.

[Tweet “NORAD IS TRACKING SANTA NOW!”]

Before saying good eve to all with love and peace wishes, please enjoy the following YouTube video courtesy of the a Beach Boys Christmas:

God Bless each and every person and life on earth this Holiday Season!

 

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ISS CREW CHRISTMAS AND SPACEWALKS

Aboard the International Space Station, Expedition 50 Flight Engineer Peggy Whitson of NASA sent Christmas and Holiday greetings and festive imagery from the Japanese Kibo laboratory module on Dec. 18.

CHRISTMAS ABOARD THE INTERNATIONAL SPACE STATION

It is now Christmas eve aboard the International Space Station. The crew takes time to wish everyone happy holidays on earth. Soon to follow, preparations will be completed for the next spacewalk with newly adapted spacesuits.

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Aboard the International Space Station, Expedition 50 Flight Engineer Peggy Whitson of NASA sent Christmas and Holiday greetings and festive imagery from the Japanese Kibo laboratory module on Dec. 18.

The six-member Expedition 50 crew from France, Russia and the U.S. is heading into the holiday weekend with spacesuit checks and eye studies. The international crew will share a Christmas meal, enjoy a light-duty weekend and take Dec. 26 off.

Commander Shane Kimbrough scrubbed cooling loops and tested the water in a pair of U.S. spacesuits today. Kimbrough and Flight Engineers Peggy Whitson and Thomas Pesquet are getting ready for a pair of spacewalks on Jan. 6 and 13. The spacewalks, in conjunction with remote robotics work, will complete the replacement of old nickel-hydrogen batteries with new lithium-ion batteries on the station’s truss structure.

Whitson, who is spending her second Christmas in space, and Pesquet drew blood, urine and saliva samples for the Fluid Shifts study. That experiment investigates the upward flow of body fluids in space potentially causing lasting vision changes in astronauts.

In the Russian segment of the International Space Station, the three cosmonauts primarily worked on maintenance tasks and science work. Oleg Novitskiy worked on communications gear and experimented with space photography techniques. Sergey Ryzhikov worked on water transfers and a cardiac study. Andrey Borisenko worked on life support equipment before studying how a crew member learns to orient themselves in microgravity.

Earlier in the week, the ISS crew completed some work while continuing other experiments:

With Christmas approaching, Expedition 50 crew members Peggy Whitson (left) and Shane Kimbrough of NASA (right) share fresh fruit that was recently delivered by the HTV-6 cargo vehicle to the International Space Station.

The crew wrapped up part of a muscle research program while continuing other experiments to study the effects of living in space. Also, a new CubeSat deployer was installed in Japan’s Kibo laboratory module.

Scientists want to understand how the lack of gravity impacts muscles that aren’t used due to working in the microgravity environment. The Sarcolab experiment is one study that measures how the calf muscle changes in space using an ultrasound and electrode stimulators. The first part of that experiment was completed today as its gear was stowed and data downlinked for analysis on Earth.

The station residents also explored how astronauts adapt to spaceflight conditions, the effects of a long-term mission on the human circulatory system and how charged particles behave in a magnetic field.

An enhanced small satellite deployer was installed in the Kibo module replacing an older model that deployed its last CubeSat on Monday. The new CubeSat deployer has twice the satellite deployment capacity than the previous version. CubeSats scheduled for release from the new deployer will study a variety of space phenomena and enable advanced satellite communications.

Also, the crew has been working on a number of research projects:

As Christmas approaches, Commander Shane Kimbrough rests in between a pair of U.S. spacesuits inside the Quest airlock.

Commander Shane Kimbrough and NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson continued more maintenance work on the Electrostatic Levitation Furnace, a combustion research device that enables high temperature science. Whitson then worked on the Packed Bed Reactor Experiment gear that observes the behavior of gases and liquids.

Whitson and Pesquet later joined their Soyuz crewmate Oleg Novitskiy for a medical emergency drill. The three Expedition 50-51 crew members reviewed CPR procedures, medical hardware and their roles and responsibilities.

Written By: Mark Garcia NASA


UNIVERSAL DIGEST is pleased to be a conduit for some of NASA’s projects and work. This article and some others were written by NASA and are mostly unedited. We do not claim credit, we simply want to make them more available to the general public.

Please note: When multiple articles are published regarding singular/similar events during a specific time period, Universal Digest will combine detail into one article. This is still mostly unedited material written by the same author.

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