Horizons mission – Installing life-support system with astronaut aid mobiPV

In September 2018 ESA’s next-generation life-support system on the International Space Station was installed. The facility recycles carbon dioxide in the air into water that can then be converted into oxygen reducing supplies sent from Earth by half.

Installing the life support rack in NASA’s Destiny laboratory is no easy task as the facility is larger than a human being and weighs over 650 kg on Earth. In addition many cables and pipes need to be connected to the Station’s infrastructure – including a pipe that vents waste methane from the recycling process directly into space.

Alexander set up the air and water drawer of the facility, including part of the Sabatier reactor on 10 September but was given an extra helping hand from ground control with an operational aid called the ‘mobile procedure viewer’ or mobiPV.

Usually an astronaut would have a computer nearby with step-by-step instructions to follow, but anybody who has tried repairing their car or even assembling furniture will agree this way of working has room for improvement – laying down tools to consult instructions is time-consuming and interrupts the work flow.

ESA’s solution to this problem sees astronauts wearing a smartphone on their wrist that connects to the Space Station’s procedure library and shows the instructions on-screen. Alexander could concentrate on the work at hand, without going back and forth to the computer.

Three sites in Germany were all connected and had full awareness of the installation as Alexander progressed step-by-step: the Columbus Control Centre near Munich, the European Astronaut Centre near Cologne and the facilities’ manufacturer Airbus in Friedrichshafen.

The mobile procedure viewer might seem simple but space operations allow little room for error and overcome technological challenges.

As the Space Station orbits Earth it loses radio contact for periods of up to eight minutes at a time. Alexander continued working during the periodic loss of signal but once communications were reestablished, mobiPV automatically and quickly brought all four teams up to speed.

As humans venture farther from Earth such as to a lunar gateway, life-support and communication with ground control will only become more challenging but last week’s operations on the Space Station are paving the way for exploration of our Solar System where greater autonomy and hands-free operations are important for planetary operations.

Follow Alexander and the #Horizons mission on social media via http://bit.ly/AlexanderGerstESA and on http://bit.ly/HorizonsBlogESA.

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ESA is Europe’s gateway to space. Our mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world. Check out http://www.esa.int/ESA to get up to speed on everything space related.

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Space Station 20th: longest continual timelapse from space

Since the very first module Zarya launched from Baikonur Cosmodrome on 20 November 1998, the International Space Station has delivered a whole new perspective on this planet we call home. Join us as we celebrate 20 years of international collaboration and research for the benefit of Earth with ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst’s longest timelapse yet.

In just under 15 minutes, this clip takes you from Tunisia across Beijing and through Australia in two trips around the world. You can follow the Station’s location using the map at the top right-hand-side of the screen alongside annotations on the photos themselves.

This timelapse comprises approximately 21 375 images of Earth all captured by Alexander from the International Space Station and shown 12.5 times faster than actual speed.

Music is Orbital Horizons, an original composition by Los Angeles-based musician Matt Piper.

Participate in further Space Station celebrations via social media using hashtag #SpaceStation20th.

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ESA is Europe’s gateway to space. Our mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world. Check out http://www.esa.int/ESA to get up to speed on everything space related.

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Antonov takeoff with first European Service Module

On Monday morning 5 November 2018 the first European Service Module for NASA’s Orion spacecraft was loaded onto an Antonov An-124 aircraft in Bremen airport and sent across the Atlantic to the NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, USA.

The module was packed in a custom-built container that keeps the environment inside within acceptable limits for transportation. It will fly via Hamburg, Germany, and Portsmouth, USA for refuelling and customs.

This delivery is a milestone in the module’s journey to the Moon. The European Service Module will be connected to the Spacecraft Adaptor and the Crew Module in USA for further testing before its final flight around the Moon. The first Orion mission, called Exploration Mission-1, will be a test flight without astronauts and will travel farther into space than any human-rated spacecraft has ventured. The mission is expected to launch in 2020.

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ESA is Europe’s gateway to space. Our mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world. Check out http://www.esa.int/ESA to get up to speed on everything space related.

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Releasing the Dragon

This timelapse video shows still pictures taken from the International Space Station of the departing #Dragon supply spacecraft. Played in quick succession the video displays faster than real life but in 4K resolution.

The Dragon spacecraft was released from the Station’s robotic arm at 18:38 GMT on 3 August 2018. Thrusters fired to increase its distance from the Space Station and the spacecraft started its deorbit and return to Earth, splashing down in the Pacific Ocean less than seven hours after release.

The International Space Station flies at 28 800 km/h above our planet doing a complete orbit in around 90 minutes – during release operations the sun set and rose above the horizon many times.

As Dragon faded into the distance it flew over a stormy part of Earth – lightning flashes can be seen many kilometres below.

Dragon is the only spacecraft that can return to Earth with scientific cargo aside from the Soyuz spacecraft that ferries astronauts to space and back – this flight carried over 1700 kg of cargo.

Watch the release of Cygnus here: https://youtu.be/bttU_rKoti0

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ESA is Europe’s gateway to space. Our mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world. Check out http://www.esa.int/ESA to get up to speed on everything space related.

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Lost & Delirious! // Claudica’s Pride 2018

Our lovely friends:
Charlie: https://www.instagram.com/charliefirthy/
Rach and Laur: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-M3Tw-fJz32oKynVmAt3rQ
Evelina and Clara: https://www.instagram.com/evelinaandclara/
Stevie: https://www.youtube.com/user/SassiBoB
Zoe: https://www.youtube.com/user/zedoheemusic

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How You Can Become A Member Of This Channel – https://youtu.be/bWb4I-3Xbis

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My last 3 videos:

Banning Straws Hurts People // The Last Straw! – https://youtu.be/4IBH0pcKzlY

A week in the life of my bed – https://youtu.be/9lznZyc343k

Positively Proving People Wrong – https://youtu.be/mjo7tlwm2dk

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Slo-Mo Underwater Swimming, Testing the GoPro 6! | Stella the Siren

Just a video of me swimming around (new bikini though). We just got a GoPro 6 and decided to test out the slow-motion capabilities. I’m so impressed by this little thing – this was all filmed in 2.7k at 120fps.

I’m thinking of doing something for Earth Day, maybe a giveaway where you can win a tail when you cook a vegetarian meal. What do you guys think?

By the way, you’d do me a huge favour if you’d follow me on Instagram or Twitter: @stellathesiren. I also have a second account where I share more day-to-day stuff, @stellabruggen. A follow is very much appreciated 🙂

Music is “Nocturnal Waltz” by Johannes Bornlöf. It has a restlessness that I feel somehow resounds in me. Do you guys experience the same thing?

This was filmed at the Aqua Mundo pool in Zandvoort, the Netherlands. Thank you for reading the description 🙂