A three-man crew closed out a 196-day expedition in orbit late Wednesday with a parachute-assisted landing on the steppe of Kazakhstan aboard the Russian Soyuz MS-17 spacecraft. NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy, Soyuz commander Anatoly Ivanishin, and flight engineer Ivan Vagner undocked from the International Space Station at 7:32 p.m. EDT (2332 GMT) Wednesday, and the trio landed at 10:54 p.m. EDT (0254 GMT).
A Soyuz rocket carrying Russian commander Sergey Ryzhikov, flight engineer Sergey Kud-Sverchkov, and veteran NASA astronaut Kate Rubins blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 1:45 a.m. EDT (0545 GMT) Wednesday. The Soyuz crew took off on a three-hour express trip to the International Space Station that culminated in a docking at 4:48 a.m. EDT (0848 GMT).
A Northrop Grumman Cygnus supply ship packed with fresh food, experiments, and a new toilet for the International Space Station approached the orbiting research lab Monday, two-and-a-half days after launching from Virginia aboard an Antares rocket. Capture of Cygnus with the station’s robotic arm occurred at 5:32 a.m. EDT (0932 GMT).
SpaceX launched 60 more Starlink satellites from the Kennedy Space Center at 7:29 a.m. EDT (1129 GMT) Tuesday aboard a Falcon 9 rocket. Meanwhile, the launch of another SpaceX rocket a few miles away with a GPS satellite has been postponed indefinitely after a countdown abort moments before liftoff Friday night.