A Russian Soyuz spacecraft streaked into space and chased down the International Space Station Tuesday, but a problem with the ferry ship’s automated rendezvous system forced commander Yuri Malenchenko to take over manual control at the last minute.
Three crewmen from Russia, the United States and Great Britain blasted off toward the International Space Station on Tuesday, rocketing into space from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in pursuit of the orbiting research lab.
A three-man crew led by six-time space flier Yuri Malenchenko rode a Soyuz rocket into orbit Tuesday, speeding away from a Kazakh launch pad on a six-hour chase of the International Space Station. Docking occurred at 1733 GMT (12:33 p.m. EST).
One day after a Soyuz crew transport rolled out to a launch pad at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, a similar Russian booster made a comparable journey Monday halfway around the world in tropical French Guiana for liftoff Thursday with two European Galileo navigation satellites.
Tugged along a historic route leading to the launch pad where Yuri Gagarin took off 1961 to become the first person in space, a Soyuz rocket rolled out of its assembly hangar in Kazakhstan and stood up on its launch mount Sunday.
Four days after a Soyuz ferry craft brought three space station fliers down to a frigid landing in Kazakhstan, three fresh crew members are poised for launch early Tuesday from the Baikonur Cosmodrome to boost the lab’s crew back to six.