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Soyuz Launch

The Soyuz rocket is the workhorse for Russian human space missions and has been used for that purpose longer than any other vehicle. In the 1960s it began carrying cosmonauts into space and then to the Soviet Salyut and Mir stations. Together with the US Space Shuttle, it ensures the transport of crews to and from the International Space Station.

To ensure that Soyuz will be able to carry out missions of this type from Europe’s Spaceport, the launch infrastructure has been designed so that it can be smoothly adapted for human spaceflight, should this be decided. The first Soyuz flight was unmanned and started on November 28, 1966.

Released 24/11/2014 2:59 am Copyright ESA–S. Corvaja, 2014 Description The Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft was launched from Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on 23 November 2014 with ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti and her crewmates to the weightless research centre where they will live and work for five months. With Samantha are Russian Soyuz commander Anton Shkaplerov and NASA astronaut Terry Virts. All three are part of the Station’s Expedition 42/43 crew. On this mission, Samantha is flying as an ESA astronaut for Italy’s ASI space agency under a special agreement between ASI and NASA.

Released 24/11/2014 2:59 am
Copyright ESA–S. Corvaja, 2014


ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti is all set for her five-month mission on the International Space Station. She will leave Earth on Sunday from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan with NASA astronaut Terry Virts and Roscosmos cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov.

Watch the international crew of astronauts board their Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft strapped to 274 tonnes of rocket propellants, accelerate to 28 800 km/h and dock with the Space Station orbiting Earth in just six hours.

Source: European Space Agency ESA



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