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International Space Station Crew Size Returns to Six

13 Sep 2017, 22:05 UTC
International Space Station Crew Size Returns to Six
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The population of the International Space Station returned to six people as the crew of Soyuz MS-06 docked with and entered the outpost. The spacecraft hard-mated with its docking port at about 10:55 p.m. EDT Sept. 12 (02:55 GMT Sept. 13), 2017.About 2 hours later, at 1:08 a.m. EDT (05:08 GMT), the hatches between the Soyuz and space station were opened allowing Russian cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin and NASA astronauts Mark Vande Hei and Joe Acaba to float inside. They were greeted by the already-aboard Expedition 53 crew members Sergey Ryazansky of Russia, Randy Bresnik of NASA, and Paolo Nespoli of the European Space Agency.“It was a very smooth ride,” Vande Hei said during the customary post-docking conference with family members. “I saw the Moon out the window; that was the first thing I saw. Coming up to the station was just absolutely incredible.”For Vande Hei, this is his first flight into space. NASA selected him to be an astronaut in 2009 before assigning him in 2015 to be part of the Expedition 51/52 increment in 2017. However, in November 2016, the space agency reassigned him to his current mission.This is the second visit to the ISS for Misurkin. His first ...

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