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Main » 2024 » April » 7 » Russia launched “Soyuz MS-23” uncrewed spacecraft.

Russia launched “Soyuz MS-23” uncrewed spacecraft.

On February 24, 2023 at 00:24 UTC the Russian “Soyuz MS-23” uncrewed spacecraft was launched from Baykonur Cosmodrome. The space vehicle was orbited by the Russian “Soyuz-2.1a” rocket-carrier.

The launch was performed from Launch Site 31 (Baykonur Cosmodrome Site 31). The “Soyuz MS-23” space vehicle is to dock with the International Space Station on February 26 to replace a damaged Soyuz (“Soyuz MS-22”) and provide an eventual ride home for three of the ISS’s crew members.

The spacecraft originally was scheduled for launch next month to ferry two Russian cosmonauts and a NASA astronaut to the ISS to replace another Soyuz that was expected to carry three other station fliers — Sergey Prokopyev, Dmitri Petelin and NASA astronaut Frank Rubio — back to Earth to wrap up a six-month mission.

But on December 14, 2022, their Soyuz (“Soyuz MS-22”) was hit by a presumed micrometeoroid that ruptured a coolant line. Russian engineers called off the planned return to Earth after concluding the lost coolant could lead to higher-than-normal, possibly unsafe internal temperatures. The original “Soyuz MS-23” crew — Oleg Kononenko, Nikolai Chub and NASA astronaut Laral O’Hara — now plan to fly in September 2023 aboard the next Soyuz in the sequence, replacing Prokopyev, Petelin and Rubio. Prokopyev and company originally planned to spend six months in space as part of a normal crew rotation. But the damage to their spacecraft and the decision to replace it means they’ll now have to stay in space for a full year. In any case, the “Soyuz MS-23” launching was critical to providing the trio with a safe ride home at the end of their extended mission as well as serving as the crew’s lifeboat in case of an emergency that might require an immediate evacuation of the space station.

Category: Manned Space Flights. | Views: 28 | Added by: Skyflyer | Tags: | Rating: 0.0/0 | |
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