German, US, Russian Crews Dock With Space Station



Russian spacecraft carrying a trio of astronauts from Russia, the United States and the European Space Agency blasted off on for a mission to the International Space Station.

The Soyuz spacecraft is carrying with it some of the well known and experienced crew members to reach the ISS.

Two astronauts and a cosmonaut have made their way to the International Space Station today inside a Soyuz MS-09 spacecraft.

The crew members are also being greeted by family and friends who watched the docking and hatch opening from the Russian Mission Control Center outside Moscow.

The new ISS 56/57 mission crew includes Russian cosmonaut Sergei Prokopyev, European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Alexander Gerst and U.S. astronaut Serena Aunon.

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The three astronauts will join Drew Feustel and Ricky Arnold of NASA and Oleg Artemyev of Roscosmos, who are now on the station. NASA says the arrival of this new crew helps aid its "long-term increase in crew size on the US segment from three to four, allowing NASA to maximize time dedicated to research on the space station".

The new space expedition's crew will stay for 187 days aboard the orbital outpost.

NASA has launched its new Expedition 56-57 mission to the ISS.

NASA broadcasted the event live on its television station, and provided updates to the docking of Expedition 56 to the space station throughout the morning.

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