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JAXA Astronaut Activity Report

JAXA Astronaut Activity Report, January 2011

Last Updated: April 1, 2011

This is JAXA's Japanese astronaut primary activity report for January 2011.

Astronaut Furukawa Trains for ISS Expedition Mission

Astronaut Furukawa, assigned as an International Space Station (ISS) Expedition 28/29 crew member, continued training for his upcoming mission aboard the ISS.

Photo: Astronaut Furukawa practicing JEMRMS operations using the JEMRMS simulator

Astronaut Furukawa practicing JEMRMS operations using the JEMRMS simulator (Photo Credit: JAXA)

In early January, Furukawa participated in training on Kibo’s robotic arm, the JEM Remote Manipulator System (JEMRMS), and a training session on JAXA’s life science experiment “CsPINs” (Dynamism of Auxin Efflux Facilitators, CsPINs, Responsible for Gravity-regulated Growth and Development in Cucumber). During the JEMRMS training, he brushed up on his JEMRMS operations skills by simulating a procedure to stow the Small Fine Arm (SFA), which is attached to the Main Arm (MA) of the JEMRMS, to its storage location on Kibo’s Exposed Facility (EF) using the JEMRMS simulator. During the CsPINs training session, he reviewed the in-flight operation procedures of the CsPINs experiment, which is expected to be performed on board Kibo while Furukawa is aboard the ISS.

In the middle of January, Furukawa returned to the United States to continue his training at NASA’s Johnson Space Center (JSC).

Photo: Astronauts Furukawa (back) and Michael Fossum (front) reviewing ISS medical equipment

Astronauts Furukawa (back) and Michael Fossum (front) reviewing ISS medical equipment (Photo Credit: JAXA/NASA)

Furukawa, who has worked as a medical doctor, reviewed medical equipment used aboard the ISS, reviewing how to use a blood pressure monitor, a pulse oximeter, a needle, and a syringe. Using his skills and knowledge, he will serve as a crew medical officer and give his fellow crew members medical treatment if they are injured during the mission.

Photo: Expedition 28 crew members participating in ISS emergency scenario training

Expedition 28 crew members participating in ISS emergency scenario training (Photo Credit: JAXA/NASA)

All six members assigned to the Expedition 28 mission participated in emergency scenario training using an ISS mockup/trainer. They simulated emergency procedures for fire, air contamination, and sudden depressurization on board the ISS, focusing on how to facilitate efficient communications between crew on orbit and flight controllers on the ground.

In addition to the emergency scenario training, they simulated other crew activities according to a crew timeline, such as updating data of the Inventory Management System (IMS), maintenance of the ISS toilets, and exercising using the station’s exercise equipment. They also learned how to carry out collaborative tasks with the other crew members.

Astronaut Hoshide Trains for ISS Expedition Mission

Astronaut Hoshide, assigned as an ISS Expedition 32/33 crew member, participated in training on the modernized Soyuz TMA-M spacecraft at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center (GCTC) in preparation for his mission aboard the ISS.

Through a lecture, Hoshide learned the layout and how to operate the panel switches of the modernized Soyuz Descent Module. He also learned the communication system, the propulsion system, the docking system, and the attitude control system of the spacecraft. After the lecture, he confirmed his understanding using a Soyuz TMA-M simulator. He also learned the Soyuz TMA-M spacecraft’s life support system, which consists of the oxygen distribution system, the cabin pressure control system, food, water, a toilet, and a Sokol space suit.

"Seven years ago, I participated in training on the Soyuz TMA spacecraft along with Astronauts Furukawa and Yamazaki. This time, I found very interesting ‘model changes’ between the Soyuz TMA spacecraft and the modernized Soyuz TMA-M spacecraft. Some of the systems are slightly modified, and some are not changed at all. During the training this time, we had an occasion to enjoy talking with Russian instructors about our training seven years ago."

Astronaut Candidate Training

Astronaut candidates Yui, Onishi, and Kanai continued their astronaut candidate training at JSC and other training sites in the United States.

Photo: Astronaut Candidate Yui practicing robotic arm operations using a simulator

Astronaut Candidate Yui practicing robotic arm operations using a simulator (Photo Credit: JAXA/CSA)

The three candidates continued their language lessons and flight training using a T-38 jet trainer. Onishi participated in Extravehicular Activity (EVA) training at JSC’s Neutral Buoyancy Laboratory (NBL) and a simulation training session, which was included to his training schedule as part of the ISS training. During the simulation training, Onishi joined his senior astronaut Noguchi, who was also taking part in the simulation training, playing the role of a crew member. Onishi received a lot of useful advice from Astronaut Noguchi while they worked together in the simulation.

Yui visited the Canadian Space Agency (CSA) to participate in two-week intensive training on the ISS’s Mobile Service System (MSS), developed by the CSA, to acquire knowledge necessary for operating the MSS.

The training began with a lecture on the MSS overview. The training also included lectures and hands-on sessions on the MSS’s structures, design concept, and integrated operations, as well as how to operate the cameras on the MSS, and how to grapple and release the Japanese H-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV), KOUNOTORI”. The session also provided virtual training using the MSS Operations and Training Simulator.

Astronaut Yamazaki Participates in Talks in Shiga and Hyogo

Photo: Astronaut Yamazaki’s Talk at Kobe’s Portopia Hotel

Astronaut Yamazaki’s Talk at Kobe’s Portopia Hotel (Photo Credit: JAXA)

Astronaut Yamazaki took part in talks at Seta Elementary School in Otsu City, Shiga Prefecture, and at the Portopia Hotel in Kobe City, Hyogo Prefecture.

During her talks, Yamazaki spoke about her mission aboard the space shuttle Discovery (STS-133 Mission), her mission tasks, life in space, and experiments performed during the mission while showing video and pictures.

In addition to the mission summary, she related some of her thoughts and realizations during the mission, such as how the Earth looked like a living creature when viewed from the ISS and how she realized the preciousness of nature on Earth when she returned to the ground and smelled the scent of green.

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