Space

May 15, 2012

Expedition 31 trio blasts off for International Space Station

NASA Flight Engineer Joseph Acaba, Russian Soyuz Commander Gennady Padalka and Flight Engineer Sergei Revin blasted off for the International Space Station at 10:01 p.m., CDT, May 14 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Acaba, Padalka and Revin are scheduled to dock their Soyuz TMA-04M spacecraft to the Poisk module of the station at 11:39 p.m., May 16. They will join Expedition 31 Commander Oleg Kononenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency and Flight Engineers Don Pettit of NASA and Andre Kuipers of the European Space Agency, who have been aboard the orbiting laboratory since Dec. 23, 2011. The six astronauts and cosmonauts will work together for about two months.

NASA Television will provide live docking coverage beginning at 11 p.m., May 16. Hatch opening and welcoming ceremonies will occur about three hours later on May 17.

Upon arrival, Acaba, Padalka and Revin will become members of the Expedition 31 crew, restoring the station’s crew complement to six and continuing scientific research aboard the station.

Pettit, Kononeko and Kuipers are scheduled to return to Earth on July 1. Acaba, Padalka and Revin will return home in mid-September.

Also on board with the crew was a small “Smokey Bear” plush toy serving as the traditional Soyuz “talisman.” Smokey Bear is the U.S. national symbol for wildfire prevention. Prior to the flight, Acaba explained he proposed flying Smokey Bear in an effort to raise awareness of human-caused wildfires. Acaba, an avid outdoorsman, holds two degrees in geology and served as an environmental education awareness promoter while in the U.S. Peace Corps.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
nasa-astronaut

Astronaut Stephen Frick retires from NASA

Astronaut Stephen Frick has retired from NASA to accept a position in the private sector. Frick, who flew as both a shuttle pilot and commander, left the Agency July 13. Steve has been a great asset to the astronaut office and ...
 
 
NASA/JPL-CalTech/R. Hurt photograph

NASA’s Kepler mission discovers bigger, older cousin to Earth

NASA/JPL-CalTech/R. Hurt photograph This size and scale of the Kepler-452 system compared alongside the Kepler-186 system and the solar system. Kepler-186 is a miniature solar system that would fit entirely inside the orbit of ...
 
 
NASA photograph by A. Gemignani

Launch, docking returns ISS crew to full strength

NASA photograph by A. Gemignani The Soyuz TMA-17M rocket launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan July 22, 2015 carrying Expedition 44 Soyuz Commander Oleg Kononenko of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos), F...
 

 
NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI photograph

NASA’s New Horizons team finds haze, flowing ice on Pluto

NASA/JHUAPL/SwRI photograph Pluto sends a breathtaking farewell to New Horizons. Backlit by the sun, Pluto’s atmosphere rings its silhouette like a luminous halo in this image taken by NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft around ...
 
 
NASA photograph

NASA satellite camera provides ‘EPIC’ view of Earth

NASA photograph Earth as seen on July 6, 2015, from a distance of one million miles by a NASA scientific camera aboard the Deep Space Climate Observatory spacecraft. A NASA camera on the Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) ...
 
 
NASA/JHUAPL/SWRI photograph

NASA’s New Horizons discovers frozen plains in heart of Pluto’s ‘heart’

In the center left of Pluto’s vast heart-shaped feature – informally named “Tombaugh Regio” — lies a vast, craterless plain that appears to be no more than 100 million years old, and is possibly still being shaped...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>