Three as­tro­nauts re­turn from In­ter­na­tional Space Sta­tion

The Myanmar Times - Weekend - - World -

THREE as­tro­nauts re­turned to Earth Thurs­day after more than six months aboard the In­ter­na­tional Space Sta­tion.

A Rus­sian Soyuz cap­sule with NASA’S Ser­ena Aunon-chan­cel­lor, Rus­sian Sergey Prokopyev and Ger­man as­tro­naut Alexan­der Gerst of the Euro­pean Space Agency landed on the snow-cov­ered steppes in Kaza­khstan, about 140 kilo­me­ters (87 miles) south­east of the city of Dzhezkaz­gan. They touched down a minute ahead of sched­ule at 11:02 a.m. lo­cal time (0502 GMT; 12:02 a.m. EST).

The crew ra­dioed that they were feel­ing fine. Rus­sian res­cue teams in he­li­copters and all-ter­rain ve­hi­cles rushed to the land­ing site to ex­tract the as­tro­nauts from the cap­sule charred by a fiery ride through at­mos­phere.

The trio has spent 197 days in space. It was the first mis­sion for Aunon-chan­cel­lor and Prokopyev, while Gerst flew his sec­ond to a to­tal of 362 days in or­bit, set­ting the ESA’S flight du­ra­tion record.

The res­cue crews helped the crew in their balky space suits leave the cap­sule and con­ducted an ini­tial med­i­cal ex­am­i­na­tion.

The as­tro­nauts will be taken to Dzhezkaz­gan for a brief wel­come cer­e­mony be­fore be­ing flown to their re­spec­tive coun­tries for more thor­ough check-ups.

NASA as­tro­naut Anne Mcclain, Rus­sian Oleg Kononenko and David Saint-jacques of the Cana­dian Space Agency, who have ar­rived at the sta­tion ear­lier this month, are set to re­main in or­bit un­til June.

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