With a new day came a new 'dawn' as the astronauts aboard Atlantis and the International Space Station added a new module to the complex.
At 7:20 a.m. CDT, the Russian Mini-Research Module-1 (MRM-1) module named Rassvet, or "dawn" in Russian, arrived at its permanent home on the nadir, or Earth-facing, port of the Zarya service module.
The mating marked the first time that the brunt-force Russian automated docking system has been used in conjunction with the ISS robotic arm.
Credit: NASA TV
STS-132 commander Ken Ham and pilot Tony Antonelli used the shuttle robotic arm to unberth the module from Atlantis' payload bay at 4:49 a.m. and handed it off to the station's robotic arm at 5:14 a.m. CDT.
Garrett Reisman and Piers Sellers, working in the station's seven-window Cupola, then maneuvered the Canadarm2 arm to deliver the module to its new position.
"Contact. It looked like a pretty good docking," announced Sellers as Rassvet was berthed. "Straight down the middle and got capture and contact."
Sellers reported to Mission Control that confirmation signals he expected to see light on his laptop never lit.
"The reason you didn't get 'contact 1' is because Garrett did too good of a job flying," radioed capcom Steve Swanson. "He went right down the middle and got a hole in one."
"He knows that and he's loving it," replied Sellers.
Expedition 23 commander Oleg Kotov monitored the automated docking sequence and final attachment to the station from the Russian segment.
Credit: NASA TV
The nearly 20-foot long Rassvet will provide additional storage space and a new docking port for Russian spacecraft. With it docked, space station assembly is now 93 percent complete by mass and 98 percent complete by volume. The station's mass is now 816,349 pounds.
Stored inside the Rassvet for delivery to the ISS is one and a half tons of food, clothing and supplies. On its exterior are temporarily attached items that will be moved during future ISS spacewalks. An airlock on Rassvet will be attached to the Russian Multi-purpose Laboratory Module (MLM) after its launch atop a Russian Proton rocket in 2012.
A European robotic arm elbow joint is also stowed on Rassvet's exterior along with a portable work post (PWP) to assist with the arm's activation, checkout and operation.
The crew members began their day at 1:50 a.m. CDT to the tunes of The Village People. "Macho Man" was played for Reisman.
"Makes us all feel like dancing," said Reisman, "and we are feeling like macho men."
Following the successful docking of the Russian Mini-Research Module-1 (MRM-1) Rassvet and after a midday meal, STS-132 mission specialists Garrett Reisman and Piers Sellers used the International Space Station's Canadarm2 to unberth the orbiter boom sensor system (OBSS) from the sill of Atlantis' cargo bay. They handed it off to the shuttle's robotic arm, operated by commander Ken Ham and pilot Tony Antonelli, as it could not reach the extension boom's grapple fixture while docked to the ISS.
The OBSS will be used to monitor activities during the mission's second spacewalk on Wednesday, as well as be the focus of a repair, the latter resulting in a slight change to the astronauts' schedule.
Flight Day 5 Highlights. Credit: NASA TV
Flight controllers revised the timeline for Atlantis' crew, adjusting it 30 minutes earlier beginning with the planned "campout" for spacewalkers Stephen Bowen and Michael Good. The change will allow the astronauts time to release a snagged portion of a cable on an OBSS camera used for imaging the shuttle's heat shield.
The campout, which is inside the Quest airlock with its pressure reduced to 10.2 psi, is to reduce the possibility of developing the bends in the low pressure of the spacesuits, which will be under 5 psi.
The campout began at 3:45 p.m. CDT, and crew sleep will begin at 5:20 p.m. On Wednesday, May 19, the crew will wake at 1:20 a.m. and begin the spacewalk at 6:15 a.m. CDT.
Earlier Tuesday, Good and Bowen configured the tools and prepared their spacesuits to replace three batteries on the port, or left-side station truss with three of the six new ones delivered by Atlantis. The remaining three 375-pound batteries are to be changed out Friday by Reisman and Good.
At the end of the workday, Atlantis' crew along with three of the station crew members met for an hour-long spacewalk procedures review.
As part of that review, the crew members spoke about the added task to resolve the camera's snagged cable. Bowen and Good will put a tie wrap on two cables to relieve the pinch preventing use of a laser range imager and an intensified video camera on the extension's pan-tilt assembly.
At 1:20 p.m., Ham, Reisman, Sellers, ISS commander Oleg Kotov, and flight engineers Alexander Skvortsov and Tracy Caldwell Dyson took a break to field questions of reporters from MSNBC, FOX News and CNN.