14 de octubre de 2020, 12:42Moscow, Oct 14 (Prensa Latina) The Soyuz-2.1a rocket on Wednesday left from platform 31 at the Kazakh Baikonur cosmodrome to take the Russian manned Soyuz MC-17 spacecraft with three cosmonauts on board, local television reported.
Two cosmonauts and a NASA astronaut blasted off on a high-speed journey to the International Space Station Wednesday, in the first such launch aboard a Russian capsule since SpaceX's game-changing debut manned flight from USA soil.
A three-person crew reached the International Space Station on Wednesday, the Russian space agency said, after a journey of just over three hours that was the fastest ever for a manned craft to the orbital lab.
For the first time, they tried a two-orbit approach and docked with the space station in just a little over three hours after lift-off.
Ahead of the launch, the NASA astronaut had expressed her excitement to Space.com.
Previous Soyuz journeys to the space station had followed a six-hour track or two-day path. The record was set during an unmanned resupply mission in August 2019.
This is her second mission to the space station.
The emergence of private players SpaceX and Boeing - part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program - has fuelled talk of a new "space race" between a number of countries. Severe precautionary measures, including more tight quarantine and cover wearing before launch, have been taken due to the Covid pandemic however the astronauts and space authorities dismissed any worries about a danger of contamination on the ISS.
In November, Rubins, Ryzhikov and Kud-Sverchkov are expected to greet NASA's SpaceX first operational Crew Dragon mission, which is bringing NASA astronauts Mike Hopkins, Victor Glover and Shannon Walker, and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Soichi Noguchi to the space station aboard the Crew Dragon vehicle.
Ryzhikov, a 46-year-old former military pilot, has spent 173 days in space compared to Rubins' 115 while Kud-Sverchkov, 37, is flying for the first time. Rogozin on Monday said he didn't conceive Moscow taking an interest "for a huge scope" in a NASA-drove Moon-orbiting station known as The Gateway.