Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .

Russian, Japanese, US crew reach ISS despite minor mishap
Moscow (AFP) July 23, 2015

Astronauts from Russia, Japan and the United States Thursday docked successfully with the International Space Station after a two-month delay, despite a minor hiccup.

The Soyuz TMA 17M rocket -- carrying cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko, US astronaut Kjell Lindgren and Kimiya Yui of Japan -- blasted off from the Baikonur cosmodrome on schedule after a two-month delay caused by the failure of a Russian rocket during an unmanned resupply mission.

The launch and the docking were successful even though one solar array did not deploy on time.

Both Russian and US space officials said the mishap did not affect the rocket's flight because the other solar arrays were still operating.

"Now THAT was awesome. Thank you to everyone who made this dream come true!" Lindgren wrote on Twitter.

Russian television broadcast footage of a beaming crew next to Russia's Gennady Padalka and Mikhail Kornienko, as well as Scott Kelly of NASA, who welcomed them on board the orbiting lab.

The spacecraft blasted off on schedule from Russian-leased Baikonur in the barren Kazakh steppe at 2102 GMT, and after a fly-around at around 350 metres (1,150 feet), the rocket manoeuvred to dok with the ISS at 0246 GMT.

Russian space officials stressed that the launch had been smooth and the third stage of the Soyuz rocket had separated on time but pointed to a possible problem with solar panels.

"A commission will probably be put together. Of course this situation will be looked into," veteran cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin said in televised remarks.

-'Same happened last year'-

Dmitry Rogozin, deputy prime minister in charge of the space industry, ordered the Roscosmos space agency to resolve the problem.

"The same happened last year," he said, suggesting that a possible manufacturing defect could be to blame.

Scientists and space enthusiasts around the world were watching the launch closely, and with some concern, given the mission had been delayed by two months after the failure of a Russian rocket.

Russia was forced to put all space travel on hold after the unmanned Progress freighter taking cargo to the ISS crashed back to Earth in late April.

The doomed ship lost contact with Earth and burned up in the atmosphere. The failure, which Russia has blamed on a problem in a Soyuz rocket, also forced a group of astronauts to spend an extra month aboard the ISS.

A space workhorse dating back to the Cold War era, the Soyuz is used for both manned and unmanned flights.

Ahead of the launch, the three astronauts said they stood by the Russian space program but conceded that, in space, everything might not go as planned.

"Machinery is machinery. It can let you down," the crew's commander Kononenko, 51, told reporters this month.

The trio will spend 163 days in space, with NASA's Lindgren, 42, and the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency's Yui, 45, making their maiden space voyages.

The spacemen said they were Star Wars fans and had chosen the R2-D2 robot, a key character in the film series, as a zero-gravity indicator for their mission.

For the official poster of the ISS Expedition 45, the astronauts posed wearing brown Jedi robes and clutching light sabres.

Sending the first man into space in 1961 and launching the first Sputnik satellite four years earlier are among key accomplishments of the Russian space programme and remain a major source of pride in the country.

But over the past few years, Russia has suffered several major setbacks, notably losing expensive satellites and unmanned supply ships to the ISS.

The United States has struggled with problems of its own, with SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket exploding minutes after liftoff from Florida's Cape Canaveral in June.

In October, US company Orbital's Antares rocket exploded after launch.

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.
SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once

credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly

paypal only


Related Links
Station at NASA
Station and More at Roscosmos
S.P. Korolev RSC Energia
Watch NASA TV via Space.TV
Space Station News at Space-Travel.Com

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Rocket carrying Russian, Japanese, US crew docks with ISS
Baikonur, Kazakhstan (AFP) Jul 23, 2015
Astronauts from Russia, Japan and the United States Thursday docked successfully with the International Space Station under six hours after they launched, NASA television showed. The Soyuz TMA 17M rocket - carrying cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko, US astronaut Kjell Lindgren and Kimiya Yui of Japan - had roared skyward from Russia's Baikonur cosmodrome in the barren Kazakh steppe at 2102 GMT. ... read more

Smithsonian embraces crowdfunding to preserve lunar spacesuit

NASA Sets Sights on Robot-Built Moon Colony

Technique may reveal the age of moon rocks during spaceflight

Russia to Land Space Vessel on Moon's Polar Region in 2019

Opportunity heading into Marathon Valley

Antarctic Offers Insights Into Life on Mars

Earth and Mars Could Share A Life History

Celebrating 50 years of Martian imagery

Space crew praises US-Russian 'handshake in space' 40 years on

Planetary Resources' First Spacecraft Successfully Deployed

NASA selects leading-edge concepts for continued study

US selects four astronauts for commercial flight

Chinese earth station is for exclusively scientific and civilian purposes

Cooperation in satellite technology put Belgium, China to forefront

China set to bolster space, polar security

China's super "eye" to speed up space rendezvous

Rocket carrying Russian, Japanese, US crew docks with ISS

Student satellite wins green light for Station deployment

'Jedi' astronauts say 'no fear' as they gear for ISS trip

Relief as Russian cargo ship docks at space station

Ariane 5 orbits Star One C4 and MSG-4 on Arianespace's sixth flight in 2015

CRS-7 Investigation Update

EUTELSAT 8 West B satellite arrive in French Guiana

Failed strut caused SpaceX rocket blast: CEO Elon Musk

Astronomers bring a new hope to find 'Tatooine' planets

The Planetary Sweet Spot

ARIEL mission to reveal 'Brave New Worlds' among exoplanets

New Method Finds Best Candidates for Telescope Time

First realization of invisible absorbers and sensors

'White graphene' structures can take the heat

Bringing back the magic in metamaterials

Battling Satellite Interference

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.