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Station Crew Gears Up For Spacecraft Traffic at the Station

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Wed Apr 9, 2014 4:58 pm via: NASA
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An express cargo delivery is on its way to the International Space Station. Nearly 3 tons of food, fuel and gear to replenish Expedition 39 launched aboard an ISS Progress 55 resupply craft at 11:26 a.m. EDT from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

The Russian space freighter will orbit Earth just four times before docking to the Pirs docking compartment at 5:20 p.m.

The 55P will occupy the same docking port left open when another Progress, the 54P, departed Monday morning filled with trash after a two-month stay. It is orbiting Earth for several days of orbital engineering tests before finally reentering the atmosphere for a fiery disposal.

There will be four vehicles docked at the orbital laboratory after the 55P arrives. Currently, there are two Soyuz vehicles and an ISS Progress 53 parked at the station. The Soyuz TMA-11M is docked to the Rassvet docking compartment and the Soyuz TMA-12M is docked to the Poisk docking compartment. The 53P space freighter is docked to the aft end of the Zvezda service module.

A fifth cargo vehicle is being readied for its mission to the space station next week. SpaceX will launch its third Dragon commercial cargo craft aboard a Falcon 9 rocket Monday April 14 at 4:58 p.m. from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.

When the Dragon arrives for its rendezvous with the station two days later it will be captured by the station’s robotic arm, Canadarm2, for a berthing to the Harmony node. The Dragon is the first space station resupply vehicle with return capability, safely delivering science research for analysis and gear for inspection, for retrieval off the coast of California.

Orbital Sciences’ Cygnus commercial resupply ship aboard an Antares rocket is lined up to follow the SpaceX Dragon when it leaves in mid-May. Scheduled for a May 6 launch, its approach and rendezvous profile will be similar to the Dragon. It will also be captured by the Canadarm2 for a berthing to Harmony. However, after it’s unberthing and release from the station’s robotic arm it will deorbit over the Pacific Ocean for a destructive reentry just like a Progress spacecraft.

The progress-55 (souyz) launch is in rendezeous to ISS at the orbital space will evacuate about 3 tons of supply for necessary requirements and shall be followed by progress launch-56 is a dragon falcon rocket will launch from kennedy space station florida USA this time by the 14th april after that the next missio will be may 6th 2014.
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