This information was provided by ESA’s Mike Steinkopf, Mission Director on console at ATV-CC for today’s hatch closing.
ATV-4 is ready for today’s hatch closure, which is planned at 16:10 CEST. Before hatch closure, the crew will remove various equipment – which will be used for the next ATV – such as the air exchange duct, fire extinguisher, gas masks and the handrails. Also, items such as the smoke detectors and the lamp housing assembly will be removed to be used as spares for other modules in ISS. The ATV and ISS hatch closure operation will start at about 15:25 CEST and finish at 18:10 CEST.
This week, the crew performed the last trash-loading activities and the last liquid-waste transfer. After that, crew took about 50 photos of the trash-loading configuration inside ATV to be reviewed by ESA cargo specialists.
This is an important task to verify that all trash has been loaded according to the return cargo map and that all items are properly and safely installed within the racks and on the Adapter plates.
The correct loading of trash is necessary to ensure that ATV is within the MCI (Mass Centre of Inertia) requirements for undocking and re-entry. In case of any deviations in the trash loading configuration (compared to the return cargo map) occurs, the crew would need to perform some CoG (Centre of Gravity) corrections before hatch closure following ESA cargo specialists inputs relocating trash items.
After photo review and verification by our specialists, no CoG correction was necessary.