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Soyuz MS-09 to land after unprecedented on-orbit repairs, inspections

20 Dec 2018, 01:36 UTC
Soyuz MS-09 to land after unprecedented on-orbit repairs, inspections
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With a mission that was anything but mundane, Soyuz MS-09 with its three-person crew is preparing to return to Earth after more than 6 months in orbit on the International Space Station. The Soyuz MS-09 vehicle rose to high public profile in August when a hole that resulted in a small atmospheric leak aboard the Station was discovered in its Orbital Module.
That hole was determined to have been drilled on the ground during the spacecraft’s manufacturing and led to a rather dramatic spacewalk earlier in December that saw cosmonauts cut into the protective casing around MS-09’s Orbital Module to conduct further investigation of the issue.
Wrapping up its mission, Soyuz MS-09 and its three-person crew from Russia, ESA, and NASA, are slated to undock from the International Space Station at 20:42 EST today (01:42 UTC on Thursday, 20 December) before landing on the Kazakh steppe at 00:03 EST (0503 UTC) on Thursday, 20 December.
Soyuz MS-09 – a profile in intrigue:
When Soyuz MS-09 launched to the Space Station on 6 June 2018, the mission seemed like most others that had come before: nominal in almost every regard with the spacecraft successfully delivering its three-person crew to the ...

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