Headlines > News > Station Crew Members Relocate Soyuz TMA-17

Station Crew Members Relocate Soyuz TMA-17

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Thu May 13, 2010 8:41 am via: NASA
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(NASA) – Three members of the Expedition 23 crew changed parking places at the International Space Station Wednesday, and in doing so, cleared the way for the launch of space shuttle Atlantis Friday on the STS-132 mission.

With Flight Engineers T.J. Creamer of NASA and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency flanking him inside the Soyuz TMA-17 spacecraft, Station Commander Oleg Kotov undocked the return craft from the Earth-facing port of the Zarya module at 9:26 a.m. EDT, then flew the Soyuz over for a redocking at the aft port of the Zvezda Service Module at 9:53 a.m. The two docking ports are a little more than 80 feet apart in a straight line distance.

Attired in their Russian Sokol launch and entry suits, Commander Oleg Kotov (left) and Flight Engineer Soichi Noguchi conduct a standard suit leak check in the Soyuz TMA-17 spacecraft in preparation for the relocation of the Soyuz. Credit: NASA

Attired in their Russian Sokol launch and entry suits, Commander Oleg Kotov (left) and Flight Engineer Soichi Noguchi conduct a standard suit leak check in the Soyuz TMA-17 spacecraft in preparation for the relocation of the Soyuz. Credit: NASA

Inside the station during the maneuver were their colleagues, Russian Flight Engineers Alexander Skvortsov and Mikhail Kornienko and NASA Flight Engineer Tracy Caldwell Dyson.

The Soyuz relocation opens up the Earth-facing port of Zarya for the installation of the new Rassvet Mini-Research Module 1 next week by Atlantis’ astronauts on the fifth day of the STS-132 mission. Atlantis is poised to begin its journey Friday afternoon with launch from the Kennedy Space Center. Rassvet, which means “dawn” in Russian, will provide additional storage space and a new docking port for Russian spacecraft.

Zvezda’s aft end port was previously home to the ISS Progress 36 cargo ship that undocked from the station Monday morning.

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