Headlines > News > Russian Cargo Craft Undocks to Test New Docking System

Russian Cargo Craft Undocks to Test New Docking System

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Mon Jul 23, 2012 3:21 am via: NASA
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The ISS Progress 47 cargo vehicle undocked from the International Space Station’s Pirs docking compartment Sunday at 4:26 p.m. EDT.

Russian flight controllers commanded the resupply ship to undock in a test of an updated docking system that will be used for both Progress and Soyuz human spacecraft in the future. The new automated rendezvous system, known as Kurs-NA, will use a single antenna, which will allow four others to be removed. The Kurs-NA-enabled Progress and Soyuz spacecraft will have only three antennas, half as many as the current versions.

Kurs-NA also will use less power, improve safety and possess updated electronics.

Progress 47 arrived at the station in April. After it was emptied of its cargo, the space station crew filled it with trash for disposal.

NASA TV coverage of the Progress’ re-rendezvous and docking will begin at 9:15 p.m. Monday, July 23. The ship will re-dock to the station at 9:57 p.m.

The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency’s HTV cargo vehicle, Kounotori3, launched from the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan on Friday at 10:06 p.m.

Kounotori3 is scheduled to complete its week-long journey to the station on July 27, when it will be grappled and berthed to the Earth-facing side of the Harmony module.

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