NASA Astronauts From International Space Stations Return To Earth [VIDEO]


According to the Russian State Space Corporation, the Russian Soyuz MS-02 spacecraft that carried three crew members of the International Space Station had successfully landed on Monday in Kazakhstan. It landed at 11:21 p.m. EDT at 147 kilometers southeast of the Kazakh city of Zhezkazgan, Xinhua.

The Soyuz MS-02 spacecraft was operated by Roskosmos, a governmental body responsible for Russia's the space science program and general aerospace research. The spacecraft travelled a total of 118 million kilometers during its 173 days 3 hours 16 minutes 21 seconds mission duration to the ISS. The Soyuz first launched at on October 19, 2016 at 8:05 UTC and docked on docking port Poisk zenith.

The capsule set to undock from the ISS at 7:58 a.m. EDT with Russian crew members Andrew Borisenko and Sergei, Ryzhikov, along with US collegue Robert Shane Kimbrough. They stayed at the Expedition 50 mission aboard the ISS since October 21, 2016.

During the mission they carried out scientific and applied research and experiments and supported the station's work capacity. They also upgraded the ISS with equipment delivered by cargo ships, Business-Standard reported.

Commander Kimbrough of NASA led the team during their 173 days in space. Borisenko and Ryzhikov were the Flight Engineers that made the mission a success.

Kimbrough has now spent 189 days in space on two flights. Borisenko has now spent 337 days in space on two flights and Ryzhikov was able to log 173 days in space for his first flight, The Space Fellowhip reported.

After Expedition 50's departure, Expediaion 51 continues to operate the station with NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson in command. Oleg Novitskiy of Roscosmos and Thomas Pequet of ESA (European Space Agency) are part of the three-person crew that will continue to operate the station until the arrival of two new crew members.  Jack Fischer of NASA and Fyodor Yurchikhin of Roscosmos are scheduled to launch on Thursday.

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