Russian spacecraft “Soyuz MS-02″, on Board of which were two Russian cosmonauts and one American astronaut joined the International space station (ISS). The astronauts met with three other crew members and took part in a joint press conference with the NASA center that is broadcast on NASA TV.
The crew of a new long-term mission 49/50 consists of Roscosmos cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Andrei Borisenko, and NASA astronaut Robert Shane Kimbrough. They will be replaced by Anatoly Ivanishin, Japanese Takuya Onishi, American Kathleen Rubens, who will return to Earth on 29 October, reports Reuters.
Expedition Ryzhikov, Borisenko and Kimbrough will last until February 2017. They will also take the crew 50/51 expedition (Russians Oleg Novitsky, Frenchman Thomas Sands and American Peggy Whitson).
In the scientific program of the Russian cosmonauts more than 50 biological, biotech, geophysical, technical and medical experiments. In addition, the crew will work with the Russian (“Progress MS”) and foreign (“Dragon” – USA) and (HTV – Japan) cargo ships, maintenance on-Board systems of the International space station and participated in its outfitting.
In addition, the “Union” also brought the relics of St. Seraphim of Sarov. After the flight of this crew, she will be transferred to the Church of the Transfiguration in Star city.
The spacecraft was launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on October 19. Initially, the launch of “Soyuz MS-02″ was scheduled for September 23, but in the course of preflight preparation the specialists at the launch site revealed a faulty cable in the control system of the reentry vehicle, making the launch was postponed.
“Union MS” (“MS,” – “upgraded system”) – the new Russian manned spacecraft. Included in the family of “Soyuz” (the first launch took place in 1966, the first manned flight in 1967). The new device updated the command and telemetry system, able now to work through the relay satellites “Luch”, a new system of rendezvous and docking “Rate-AT” and other equipment.