A Soyuz rocket poised to send two new crew members to the International Space Station rolled to its launch pad Tuesday at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
The Soyuz-FG rocket emerged from an assembly building at the Central Asia spaceport at sunrise Tuesday. Lying on its side, the three-stage launcher rode a specially-designed rail car to Launch Pad. No. 1 at Baikonur, a historic launch site used in 1961 on the flight of Yuri Gagarin, who became the first person to travel in space.
Russian cosmonaut Alexey Ovchinin will occupy the center seat when the Soyuz MS-10 spacecraft lifts off at 0840 GMT (4:40 a.m. EDT) Thursday from Baikonur. He will be joined by NASA astronaut Nick Hague in the left seat of the Soyuz spacecraft.
After a nearly nine-minute climb into orbit, the Soyuz MS-10 spacecraft will commence its chase of the International Space Station, with docking planned at 1444 GMT (10:44 a.m. EDT). The arrival of Ovchinin and Hague will raise the station’s crew complement to five.
The duo plans to stay on the space station until mid-April.
See our Mission Status Center for details and live coverage of the launch.
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