Expedition 42 Returns to Earth
The Soyuz TMA-14M spacecraft is seen as it lands with International Space Station Expedition 42 commander Barry Wilmore of NASA, Alexander Samokutyaev of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and Elena Serova of Roscosmos near the town of Zhezkazgan, Kazakhstan. The landing took place on the evening of Wednesday, March 11 in the U.S, and early in the morning on Thursday, March 12, in Kazakhstan.
The three crew members returned to Earth after a 167-day mission on the orbital outpost that included hundreds of scientific experiments and several spacewalks to prepare the orbiting laboratory for future arrivals by U.S. commercial crew spacecraft.
Space Station Crew Returns to Earth, Lands Safely in Kazakhstan
ЕСТЬ ПОСАДКА! They have landed! This message was posted to the center screen of the Russian Federal Space Agency's Mission Control Center in Korolev, Russia, the moment confirmation was received that the Soyuz carrying three crew members of the International Space Station's Expedition 42 had landed on time and target in Kazakhstan.
Image Credit: NASA
Three crew members returned to Earth Wednesday after a 167-day mission on the International Space Station (ISS) that included hundreds of scientific experiments and several spacewalks to prepare the orbiting laboratory for future arrivals by U.S. commercial crew spacecraft.
Expedition 42 commander Barry Wilmore of NASA and flight engineers Alexander Samokutyaev and Elena Serova of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) touched down at approximately 10:07 p.m. EDT (8:07 a.m. March 12, Kazakh time) southeast of the remote town of Dzhezkazgan in Kazakhstan.During their time on station, the crew members participated in a variety of research focusing on the effects of microgravity on cells, Earth observation, physical science and biological and molecular science. One of several key research focus areas during Expedition 42 was human health management for long-duration space travel, as NASA and Roscosmos prepare for two crew members to spend one year aboard the space station.
The space station also serves as a test bed to demonstrate new technology. The Cloud-Aerosol Transport System (CATS) arrived and was installed during Expedition 42, and already is providing data to improve scientists’ understanding of the structure and evolution of Earth's atmosphere. This may lead to enhancements to spacecraft launches, landings and communications systems; help guide future atmospheric investigations of Mars, Jupiter or other worlds; and help researchers model and predict climate changes on Earth.
The newly installed Electromagnetic Levitator will allow scientists to observe fundamental physical processes as liquid metals cool, potentially leading to lighter, higher-performing alloy, mixtures of two or more metals or a metal and another material, for use on Earth and in space.
The station crew also welcomed three cargo spacecraft with several tons of scientific investigations, food, fuel and other supplies. In January, the trio helped grapple and connect a SpaceX Dragon spacecraft on the company's fifth contracted commercial resupply mission to the station. The Dragon returned to Earth in February with critical science samples. Two Russian ISS Progress cargo craft docked to the station in October and February. The fifth and final European Automated Transfer Vehicle, bearing the name of Belgian physicist Georges Lemaître, considered the father of the big-bang theory, departed the station in February.
During his time on the orbital complex, Wilmore ventured outside the space station with NASA astronaut Terry Virts on three spacewalks to prepare for new international docking adapters and future U.S. commercial crew spacecraft. Wilmore also completed a spacewalk in October with fellow NASA astronaut Reid Wiseman to replace a failed voltage regulator. Samokutyaev conducted one spacewalk during his time in space.
Having completed his second space station mission, Samokutyaev now has spent 331 days in space. Wilmore, having previously flown as a shuttle pilot on STS-129, has spent 178 days in space. Serova spent 167 days in space on her first flight.
Expedition 43 currently is operating the station, with Virts in command. Flight engineers Anton Shkaplerov of Roscosmos and Samantha Cristoforetti of ESA (European Space Agency), are continuing station research and operations until three new crewmates arrive in two weeks. NASA’s Scott Kelly and Roscosmos’ Mikhail Kornienko and Gennady Padalka are scheduled to launch from Kazakhstan March 27, Eastern time. Kelly and Kornienko will embark on the first joint U.S.-Russian one-year mission, an important stepping stone on NASA’s journey to Mars.
Expedition 42 commander Barry Wilmore of NASA makes his way out of the Soyuz spacecraft following the crew's 167-day mission aboard the space station.
Image Credit: NASA
Her first mission to the space station, Expedition 42 flight engineer Elena Serova of the Russian Federal Space Agency is assisted in her exit from the Soyuz that returned her and her team members from the ISS.
Image Credit: NASA
With the end of this mission, flight engineer Alexander Samokutyaev of the Russian Federal Space Agency now has accrued 331 days in space.
Image Credit: NASA
Russia’s first female cosmonaut in past 20 years to return to Earth from ISS
The Soyuz TMA-14M reentry module is to land some 146 kilometres southeast of Kazakhstan’s city of Dzhezkazgan
The crew of the Soyuz TMA-14M piloted spaceship returns from the International Space Station /ISS/ to the Earth on Thursday.
Russian cosmonauts Aleksandr Samokutyayev and Yelena Serova (Russia’s first female cosmonaut in the past twenty years) and their American crew mate, NASA astronaut Barry Wilmore, are returning after a six-month mission onboard the ISS. Their space mission started in late September 2014.
"The Soyuz TMA-14M reentry module is to land at 05:08 Moscow time some 146 kilometres southeast of Kazakhstan’s city of Dzhezkazgan," a spokesman for the Mission Control Centre told TASS.
The Soyuz will undock from the International Space Station at 01:44 Moscow time.
About 200 servicemen, 14 Mi-8 helicopters, three An-12 and An-26 planes and six amphibious transport vehicles of the rescue team of the Central military district will backup safe landing of the space vehicle and evacuation of the crew, the press service of the military district told TASS earlier.
On the following day after the landing, after a medical examination the crew will receive presents from the company Kentavr-Nauka, the key supplier of space garments. "We have prepared souvenir polo shirts with embroidered emblem of the expedition for Samokrutyayev and Serova to remind them of their space flight," Alexander Yarov, the company’s director, told TASS.
Russian cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov, US astronaut Terry Virts and European Space Agency astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti will stay at ISS. Virts has taken over as the ISS commander from Wilmore.
The Soyuz TMA-14M crew fulfilled a number of works with Russia’s Progress cargo spacecraft, the European cargo spaceship ATV-5, which after undocking from the ISS was drowned in the Pacific in February. Also, they carried out a wide scientific programme.
Samokutyayev and Maksim Surayev, a member of the previous ISS expedition, made a spacewalk under the programme of the station’s Russian segment.
Four spacewalks were performed under the American programme. Wilmore took part in all of them.
The next expedition — Roscosmos (Russian Federal Space Agency) cosmonauts Gennady Padalka and Mikhail Kornienko and NASA astronaut Scott Kelly — will take off onboard a Soyuz TMA-16M spaceship from the Baikonur space center on March 27.