What’s a week in the life of an astronaut on the ISS like?

Answer on @Quora by @RobertFrost01 to What's a week in the life of an astronaut on the ISS like? – Xochielt Sanchez

Answer by Robert Frost:

The smiling is just a cultural thing – people smile when someone holds up a camera.

Food and other supplies arrives via cargo vehicle, such as the SpaceX Dragon, Orbital Cygnus, Japanese HTV, or Russian Progress.

Urine is collected and sent through the Urine Processing Assembly (UPA) and Water Processing Assembly (WPA) through which it is turned back into drinking water (as astronaut Don Pettit has said, “Today’s coffee becomes tomorrow’s coffee.”  A byproduct of the processing called brine is collected and put into portable Russian tanks called EDV.  When the EDV is full, it is taken to a visiting vehicle and connected to the water tanks of that vehicle and offloaded.

Solid waste is collected in a Russian Solid Waste Container (KTO).  Full KTO are placed in a cargo vehicle that will burn up in the atmosphere during reentry.

The seven day week consists of five and half days schedule for working nominal tasks and a contiguous 1.5 days off.  That doesn't necessarily mean the crew do no work during that 1.5 days, just that they aren't scheduled for tasks other than mandatory things like exercise.

A 24 hour day is composed of 8.5 hours allotted for sleep. 6.5 hours allotted to scheduled work tasks, 2.5 hours schedule for required exercise, 1 hour scheduled for lunch.  There is also time allotted for daily planning conferences with the ground, work preparation time (time to read procedures and gather tools), and plan familiarization time (time to review the day's schedule).  And then pre-sleep and post-sleep time during which hygiene activities, dinner, and breakfast are completed.

Here are two typical daily plans for an astronaut aboard the International Space Station (ISS):

0600 GMT  wake up  personal time

07:30 Discuss today's work with the ground
07:45 Daily tasks – maintenance, payloads etc.
09:45 Exercise on Bike 1hr

10:45 Exercise rope strength training 1 hr (Medical)
11:45 Strength training 1:20m

13:00 Lunch

14:00 EVA Suit maintenance

14:30 Prep for a PAO
14:40 PAO (Public Affairs activities) 20m

15:00 ATV transfer operations

16:30 PMC (Private Medical Conference with the ground)
17:10 PPC (Private Psychological Conference)
17:40 ATV transfer operations
18:35 prep for next day
19:05 Discuss day's work with the ground
19:30 personal time before sleep

21:30 Sleep

06:00 GMT  wake up  personal time
07:30 Discuss today's work with the ground
08:15 Install Alignment Guides for Flammable Liquids Cabinet
08:25 ATV Transfer
09:50 Spinal Elongation Microgravity Experiment
11:30 Load Platform Serial Network Flow Monitor Scientific Hardware Cabinet
11:45 Switch Load Scientific Experiment
12:00 Binary Colloidal Alloy Experiment

12:20 Conference with ground about storage of supplies
12:40 Switch Load Biological Research System Experiment
12:55 Lunch

13:55 ATV Transfer
15:15 Strength Training
16:45 ATV Transfer
16:55 Treadmill Exercise

18:15 Prepare for Next Day's Work
18:45 Discuss today's work with ground
19:10 Prepare for Next Day's Work
19:30 Personal time before going to sleep

21:20 Spinal Elongation Experiment
21:25 Binary Colloidal Alloy Experiment
21:30 Sleep

The crew's timelines for each day can be seen at this site: ISS live!

What's a week in the life of an astronaut on the ISS like?


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