Astronauts from the United States and Russia are leaving for the International Space Station
MOSCOW – The trio of Russian and American astronauts set off for the International Space Station on Friday.
NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hey and Russian astronauts Oleg Novitsky and Pyotr Dubrov departed as scheduled at 12:42 p.m.
The capsule is scheduled to dock at the orbit laboratory after a three-hour, two-orbit voyage.
This was Vande Hay’s second space mission, the third for Novitsky and the first for Dubro.
During their time at ISS, they will work on hundreds of experiments in biology, biotechnology, physics and earth sciences.
The launch comes three days before the 60th anniversary of the launch of the first human-Soviet astronaut Yuri Gagarin and the 40th anniversary of the launch of the first NASA spacecraft.
Already on the space station are NASA members Kate Rubins, Michael Hopkins, Victor Clover and Shannon Walker; Astronauts Sergei Ryjikov and Sergei Good-Sverkov, and Japanese astronaut Sochi Nokuchi.
Rubins, Raishikov and Good-Sverkov arrived in another Soyuz capsule in October, and Hopkins, Clover, Walker and Nokuchi – the crew of SpaceX’s Dragon Reliance Crew – joined them in November.