by Staff Writers
Moscow (Sputnik) Jun 13, 2016
Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko and two colleagues will return to Earth on June 18 after 186 days on board the International Space Station (ISS) the US National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) announced in a press release.
Malenchenko will be joined on the return flight by NASA's Timothy Kopra and the European Space Agency's Timothy Peake.
"[The astronauts'] return will wrap up 186 days in space for the crew since their launch in December 2015," NASA stated on Friday. "Together, the Expedition 47 crew members contributed to hundreds of experiments in biology, biotechnology, physical science and Earth science aboard humanity's only orbiting laboratory."
They will leave behind two Russian cosmonauts, Oleg Skripochka and Alexey Ovchinin, and NASA's Jeff Williams. The broadcast on NASA TV will be available on the agency's webpage.
US, Russian Astronauts Enter ISS Deep Space Habitat for First Time
"Along with Russian cosmonaut Oleg Skripochka, [US astronaut Jeff] Williams entered BEAM for the first time to collect an air sample and begin downloading data from sensors on the dynamics of BEAM's expansion," NASA stated.
Williams told NASA Mission Control that the habit looked "pristine" and was cold, but also noted that there was no evidence of condensation inside the module.
BEAM is designed to take up less space on a rocket than a traditional space habitat. During a two-year mission, astronauts will test how it performs and protects against solar radiation, space debris and extreme temperatures.
BEAM launched on April 8 on board a SpaceX Dragon cargo spacecraft and was attached to the ISS about a week later.
Source: Sputnik News
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