The Russian Soyuz MS-24 spacecraft carrying two Roscosmos cosmonauts and one NASA astronaut arrived at the International Space Station (ISS). Photo/NASA TV/Space
BAIKONUR – The Russian Soyuz MS-24 spacecraft carrying two Roscosmos cosmonauts and one NASA astronaut arrived at the International Space Station (ISS). Soyuz MS-24 arrived at the ISS approximately 3 hours after the launch of the Soyuz 2.1a rocket from Site 31/6 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, Friday 15 September 2023 at 11:44 local time.
Soyuz MS-24 arrived at the ISS and docked with the Rassvet mini research module at 14:53 Russian time after a flight distance of 260 miles (418 kilometers). It was recorded that Soyuz MS-23 traveled for 3 hours 9 minutes after taking off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome and made a very fast journey to the ISS.
Soyuz MS-24 carried Loral O’Hara of NASA and Oleg Kononenko and Nikolai Chub, both of the Russian space agency Roscosmos. About two hours later, the hatch between the Soyuz and the ISS opened, and the three spacecraft hovered above the orbiting laboratory.
O’Hara, Kononenko and Chub joined seven other spacecraft in the orbiting laboratory. The two cosmonauts have embarked on a year-long ISS mission, while O’Hara will return home in six months.
O’Hara and Chub were novices in spaceflight, but Kononenko was very experienced. The cosmonaut had spent 736 days in orbit on four different ISS missions before today’s launch.
“I’ve dreamed about exploration since I was a child. “It was something I dreamed of from an early age, space flight captured my imagination,” O’Hara said.
During his year on duty, Kononenko will break the all-time record for longest time in space, 878 days, held by fellow cosmonaut Gennady Padalka. The arrival of MS-24 is also to bring the three MS-22/23 crew back to Earth on September 27 2023.
The Soyuz carried cosmonauts Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitry Petelin and NASA’s Frank Rubio back to Earth. Rubio had spent 371 consecutive days in space at the time of his return, a record for an American astronaut.
Soyuz MS-24 is the 70th Russian Soyuz launched to the International Space Station since 2000 and the 153rd to fly since 1967.