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International Space Station Flight 2A.1

Payload Bay

The SPACEHAB double module is a pressurized, mixed-cargo carrier which supports various quantities, sizes, and locations of experiment hardware. It augments the orbiter middeck by providing a total cargo capacity of up to 4,536 kilograms (10,000 pounds) with the ability to accommodate powered payloads. This double module contains systems necessary to support the habitat for the astronauts, such as ventilation, lighting and limited power.

For STS-96, the double module carried internal and resupply cargo for station outfitting. The flight crew had a number of duties in the SPACEHAB during the mission, such as activation/deactivation, monitoring and in-flight maintenance of SPACEHAB subsystems.

The SPACEHAB was activated for the crew to begin on-orbit experiments shortly after Space Shuttle Discovery entered orbit.

Integrated Cargo Carrier
The Integrated Cargo Carrier will carry a number of cargo items to be transferred to the station, including Strela, an external Russian cargo crane, the SPACEHAB Oceaneering Space System Box, a logistics items carrier, and the ORU Transfer Device, a U.S.-built crane that will be stowed on Unity for use during future ISS assembly missions.

The Student Tracked Atmospheric Research Satellite for Heuristic International Networking Equipment (STARSHINE) is a Rocky Mountain NASA Space Grant Consortium/Utah State University sponsored ejectable satellite. The STARSHINE satellite is a 42-centimeter (19-inch) hollow sphere covered by over 800 polished aluminum mirrors.

International student volunteer observers visually tracked this optically reflective spacecraft during morning and evening twilight intervals for several months, calculating its orbit from shared observations and deriving atmospheric density from drag-induced changes in its orbit over time.

Shuttle Vibration Forces Experiment
The Shuttle Vibration Forces (SVF) experiment provided flight measurements of the vibratory forces acting between an aerospace payload and its mounting structure. This was accomplished using commercially available triaxial force transducers and three Wide-band Stand-Alone Acceleration Measurement Devices that were built by Johnson Space Center in Texas and funded by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California for this application. The force transducers were incorporated into four custom brackets that replaced the existing brackets used to attach the 1.5-meter (five-foot) standard canister to the side wall GAS adapter beam.

The SVF payload is self-contained, battery-powered and does not require any crew interface. The SVF was automatically activated at liftoff, and operated for about 100 seconds. STS-96 was the second flight of the SVF experiment.

Orbiter Integrated Vehicle Health Monitoring-HEDS
Technology Demonstration

The Orbiter Integrated Vehicle Health Monitoring- HEDS Technology Demonstration (IVHM HTD) demonstrated competing modern, off-the-shelf sensing technologies in an operational environment to make informed design decisions for future orbiter upgrades.

Technologies tested included hazardous gas detection, cryogenic line pressure sensing, structural strain/temperature determination, thermal flow meter leak detection, Hall Effect current sensing, accelerometers for pump vibration sensing, VME bus architecture, flash card memory and neural networks.

NASA planned to fly two HTDs on the same orbiter on successive flights with incorporation of additional sensors between flights. The IVHM HTD was mounted on a GAS Beam in the orbiter payload bay.

What is a payload?
IMAGE: Shuttle payload bay
The formal designation as a "payload" indicates that the experiment will be accorded top priority in crew time and energies during the entire flight, along with all other experiments carrying the same "payload" designation.
Related Links
*International Space Station Flight 2A.1
*STS-96 Payloads (Shuttle Press Kit)

Curator: Kim Dismukes | Responsible NASA Official: John Ira Petty | Updated: 04/07/2002
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