Monday, March 21, 2011

New Launch Date Set For Next ISS Crew

The final three members of the 27th expedition to the International Space Station now are scheduled to launch April 4 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Russian cosmonauts Andrey Borisenko and Alexander Samokutyaev and U.S. astronaut Ron Garan had been scheduled to launch March 30. However, problems cropped up with the communications system of the Soyuz spacecraft the three will be flying to the outpost.

Russian engineers traced the problem to a faulty capacitor. The electrical device was removed and replaced and the spare worked properly during checkouts.

Borisenko, Samokutyaev and Garan will join Russian cosmonaut Dmitry Kondratyev, European Space Agency astronaut Paolo Nespoli and U.S. astronaut Catherine Coleman. The six comprise the crew of the 27th expedition to the station. The current crew will return to Earth in May. The new crew will remain onboard until September.

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