Space

December 28, 2012

Soyuz capsule carrying 3-man crew docks with International Space Station

A Soyuz capsule packed with three astronauts successfully docked Dec. 21 with the International Space Station, taking the size of the full crew at the orbiting laboratory to six.

American Tom Marshburn, Russian Roman Romanenko and Canadian Chris Hadfield traveled two days in the capsule before linking up with the space station’s Russian Rassvet research module.

The docking took place around 255 miles above Almaty, the capital of Kazakhstan.

Almost three hours passed before pressure was equalized between the capsule and the space station, allowing for safe entrance.

As the hatches were unlocked, the arriving trio was welcomed by NASA astronaut Kevin Ford and Russian colleagues Oleg Novitsky and Yevgeny Tarelkin.

The six colleagues exchanged hugs and posed for photos as they floated in the weightless atmosphere of the station.

Minutes after entry, Hadfield could be heard saying in English: “I love what you’ve done with the place.”

Hadfield flew to the space station in 2001, when he spent 11 days at the facility and performed two spacewalks. He will take over as the space station’s first ever Canadian commander in its fourteen year history when the crew now onboard prepares to leave in March.

Family members spoke for the first since the launch with the astronauts in a linkup from the Korolyov space center outside Moscow.

“It was just a heck of a ride for the three of us. It’s like being on a crazy dragster, just a fun, crazy zip up to space,” Hadfield said, speaking to his son.

The incoming crew will spend nearly five months at the space station before returning to earth.

Their mission began with a launch from the Russian-leased Baikonur space port in southern Kazakhstan.

The International Space Station is the biggest orbiting outpost ever built and can sometimes be seen from the Earth with the naked eye. It consists of more than a dozen modules built by the U.S., Russia, Canada, Japan and the European Space Agency.

The astronauts will conduct some 50 scientific experiments including a test for a system aimed at predicting natural calamities. AP

 




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


 
 

 
nasa-astronaut

Veteran NASA astronaut, spacewalker retires from NASA

Veteran astronaut Mike Foreman has retired from NASA to join a Houston-based consulting firm. A retired captain in the U.S. Navy, Foreman’s last day with the agency is July 31. “Mike is a great American who has served our ...
 
 
NASA/JPL-Caltech photograph

NASA selects proposals to study neutron stars, black holes, more

NASA/JPL-Caltech photograph The Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR), launched in 2012, is an Explorer mission that allows astronomers to study the universe in high energy X-rays. NASA has selected five proposals subm...
 
 
NASA/JPL-Caltech  image

NASA’s Spitzer confirms closest rocky exoplanet

NASA/JPL-Caltech image This artist’s concept shows the silhouette of a rocky planet, dubbed HD 219134b. At 21 light-years away, the planet is the closest outside of our solar system that can be seen crossing, or transitin...
 

 

NASA awards contract to support agency’s human spaceflight programs

NASA has selected Wyle Laboratories Inc., of El Segundo, Calif., to provide biomedical, medical and health services in support of all human spaceflight programs at the agency’s Johnson Space Center in Houston. The work supports ongoing research aboard the International Space Station and helps enable the journey to Mars. The Human Health and Performance contract...
 
 
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 ...
 




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>