Chores on the Space Station

That snowy rocket you see is a Russian Soyuz rocket at Kazakhstan’s Baikonur Cosmodrome, which is set to launch tonight at 9:12 p.m. EST (0212 Jan. 18 GMT) and which sheds a light on the chores that go into keeping the International Space Station running. explains what goes into a space station shopping list:

Riding aboard the Progress 24 space freighter will be more than 1,720 pounds of propellant, 110 pounds of oxygen and about 3,285 pounds of dry cargo – which includes new equipment, experiments and spare parts. The fresh supplies are expected to arrive at the space station’s Russian-built Pirs docking compartment Friday at 10:03 p.m. EST (0303 Jan. 20 GMT) .

 To prepare for Progress 24’s ISS arrival, the station’s Expedition 14 crew and their flight controllers on Earth will cast off an older cargo ship – Progress 22 – from its berth at the Pirs compartment at about 6:29 p.m. EST today (2329 GMT).

As for the trash — well, it looks like someone took it out a bit early:

Fragments of a Russian cargo ship carrying garbage and used equipment from the international space station (ISS) have crashed into the southern Pacific Ocean ahead of the arrival of a new cargo ship, a Russian official said.

Engineers undocked the Progress M-57 at around 2.29am (1029 AEDT) and sent it hurtling toward Earth, said Vera Medvedkova, a spokesman for the Federal Space Agency.

Much of the ship burnt up as it re-entered the atmosphere, and fragments crashed in a vast area of the Pacific, some 4,200 kilometres east of New Zealand, just under four hours later, she said.

Funny. It seems like it takes more than four hours just to get my trash out to the curb.