ENP Newswire -
Release date- 14052014 - Three crew members from the
Expedition 39 Commander
During Expedition 39, the crew participated in a variety of research, including a human immune system activation and suppression study and a protein crystal growth research study looking for proteins responsible for Huntington's disease and other neurodegenerative conditions. The crew also installed a new plant growth chamber designed to expand in-orbit food production capabilities.
One of several key research focus areas during Expedition 39 was human health management for long duration space travel, as
During their time aboard the orbiting laboratory, the trio welcomed three cargo spacecraft. A Russian
In April, SpaceX launched its Dragon spacecraft to the station for the SpaceX-3 cargo resupply mission. Both capsules were loaded with cargo and science experiments. This was Orbital's first of at least eight cargo flights to the space station, and it was the third of at least 12 flights for SpaceX scheduled through 2016 under
Mastracchio, Tyurin and Wakata arrived at the station
During his time on the orbiting complex, Mastracchio ventured outside the confines of the space station for three contingency spacewalks. The first two were to remove and replace a faulty cooling pump, and the third to remove and replace a failed backup computer relay box.
The space station is more than a scientific research platform. It also serves as a test bed to demonstrate new technology. With the arrival of SpaceX-3, the Expedition 39 crew unloaded new climbing legs for
Further upgrades and a battery backpack, necessary for the robot to operate completely untethered, will launch to the station later this year. Ground controllers using the station's robotic arm also installed a new high-definition Earth-viewing camera system, referred to as HDEV, on the outside of the Columbus lab. HDEV is comprised of four commercially available HD cameras and streams online live video of Earth to online viewers around the world.
Having completed his fourth space station mission, Mastracchio now has spent 228 days in space. Wakata has spent 348 days in space on four flights and served as the first Japanese commander of the
Expedition 40 now is operating aboard the station, with
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