Soyuz Rocket Successfully Docks at ISS, Met by Jubilant Astronauts
Soyuz Rocket Successfully Docks at ISS, Met by Jubilant Astronauts
Russia’s Soyuz rocket successfully launched into orbit
05 December, 2018, 18:32
Soyuz-FG carrier rocket with Soyuz MS-11 manned transport vehicle that delivered the worldwide crew to the ISS blasted off Baikonur Cosmodrome on 3 December 2018, at 14:31 Moscow time.
A Soyuz rocket carrying Russian, American and Canadian astronauts took off from Kazakhstan and reached orbit on Monday, in the first manned mission since a failed launch in October.
Hague and Ovchinin were forced to abort an October 11 mission to the ISS because of an anomaly with the Soyuz spacecraft's booster. The spacecraft made four orbits over six hours as it chased down the space station for the docking.
Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques has arrived at the International Space Station. After the crew checked for leaks, the hatch was opened and they were welcomed aboard the ISS, their home for the next six months.
They'll stay aboard the space station for about 6.5 months performing science and learning how to live in space.
The incident became the first failure of a manned space launch in modern Russian history. Its current crew - Sergey Prokopyev, Serena Auñón-Chancellor, and CommanderAlexander Gerst - will return to Earth on December 20.
The Soviet-designed Soyuz rocket is now the world's only lifeline to the ISS. They are scheduled to return to Earth on December 20.
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The latest trip comes less than two months after a previous mission on October 11 failed, when two astronauts from the U.S. and Russian Federation were forced to make an emergency landing, as a result of a problem with the booster.
Astronaut Hague and cosmonaut Ovchinin will once again attempt to join the ISS crew on February 28, 2019, alongside Christina Hammock Koch.
A Russian investigation attributed the failure to a sensor that was damaged during the rocket's final assembly. The Soyuz accident in October was the first aborted crew launch for the Russian space program since 1983, when two Soviet cosmonauts safely jettisoned after a launch pad explosion.
"We have confirmation of the spacecraft separation; Soyuz capsule and crew safely in orbit", NASA TV said online in its blow-by-blow commentary of the take-off.
The new crew is scheduled to be onboard during the first test flights of NASA's Commercial Crew Programme, which will return human spaceflight launches to United States soil.
The Soyuz spacecraft is now the only vehicle that can ferry crews to the space station, but Russian Federation stands to lose that monopoly in the coming years with the arrival of SpaceX's Dragon and Boeing's Starliner crew capsules.
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NASA spokesperson Gary Johnson described the mission as "textbook launch and insertion into orbit" during the liftoff commentary. Russian Federation suspended all manned space launches pending an investigation before giving the green light November 1.
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