A space crew consisting of three astronauts, namely Sergey Prokopyev of the Russian space agency Roscosmos, Serena Aunon-Chancellor of NASA, and the European Space Agency’s Alexander Gerst from Germany, blasted off to the International Space Station (ISS) on Wednesday 6th June. They launched for the mission onboard a Russian spacecraft Soyuz MS-09, which lifted off from the Baikonur cosmodrome of Kazakhstan at around 7:12 a.m. EDT (GMT-4; 5:12 p.m. local time). The spacecraft has entered successfully into the assigned orbit and as estimated, if things go smooth, the ferry ship would reach the ISS on Friday at near about 9:07 a.m.
These three astronauts would be joining the three spacemen, namely NASA’s Drew Feustel, the commander of Expedition 56; NASA’s Ricky Arnold; and Oleg Artemyev of Roscosmos, already aboard the orbiting space station. The crew already present at the ISS was ferried by the Soyuz MS-08/54S on 21st March.
As revealed by NASA, the space crew of 6 astronauts would be working in the upcoming days on around two hundred fifty science research in the fields of Earth Science, Biology, Human Research, Technological Development, and Physical Sciences.
The Roscosmos stated that the launch of Wednesday was attended by Dmitry Rogozin, its chief, and Jon Huntsman, the United States Ambassador to Russia. The Russian space agency said that the rough relationship between Russia and the United States could be strengthened through the continuing mutual co-operation of both the countries in space programs. The relations between the 2 countries turned rough due to some issues after the Cold War including- the Ukraine crisis, the Syria war, and the surfaced news that Russia was interfering in the 2016 United States Presidential elections.
With this mission, astronauts Auñón-Chancellor and Prokopyev made their initial spaceflight whereas Gerst made his 2nd spaceflight to the ISS. Gerst had previously worked at the space station for one hundred sixty-five days in the year 2014.
The very experienced flight surgeon, Auñón-Chancellor was initially scheduled for a later space program. She was again rescheduled for the Soyuz MS-09 flight as the original space crew member, astronaut Jeanette Epps, got suddenly eliminated from the Prokopyev-Gerst crew in the month of January.