Soyuz space cap­sule re­turns to Earth from 115-day mis­sion

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - WEATHER -

MOSCOW >> A Rus­sian Soyuz space cap­sule has landed in Kaza­khstan, bring­ing three as­tro­nauts from the United States, Ja­pan and Rus­sia back to Earth from a 115day mis­sion aboard the In­ter­na­tional Space Sta­tion.

The land­ing took place Sun­day morn­ing near Dzhezkaz­gan on the tree­less Cen­tral Asian steppes.

Kate Ru­bins of NASA, Ja­pan’s Takuya Onishi and Ana­toly Ivan­ishin of Rus­sia were re­moved from the cap­sule and sat on the steppes still in their cap­sule seats while they read­justed to the forces of grav­ity after nearly four months in weight­less con­di­tions, then were taken to a nearby med­i­cal tent for ini­tial ex­am­i­na­tion.

An­drei Borisenko and Sergey Ryzhykov of Rus­sia and NASA as­tro­naut Robert Shane Kim­brough re­main aboard the space sta­tion. They ar­rived on Oct. 22 after a two-day voy­age.

The trip back to Earth was much quicker for the three re­turnees on Sun­day, about 3½ hours from un­dock­ing un­til land­ing.

The cap­sule landed as sched­uled and was closely tracked by he­li­copters as it wafted through partly cloudy skies un­der a parachute marked in red and white con­cen­tric cir­cles. The craft landed up­right, which made the ex­trac­tion of the as­tro­nauts quicker than when cap­sules land on their sides.

THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS

NASA as­tro­naut Kate Ru­bins talks to her fam­ily via satel­lite phone shortly after she is helped out of the Soyuz MS-01 space­craft Sun­day.

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