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Waspie_Dwarf

ISS Crew Set to Undock

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Crew Set to Undock Friday After Weather Delay at Landing Site

After their landing was postponed Thursday due to inclement weather at the landing site in Kazakhstan, Expedition 34 Commander Kevin Ford and Flight Engineers Oleg Novitskiy and Evgeny Tarelkin are set to depart the International Space Station Friday and return to Earth.

› Listen to the landing delay call from mission control (25 MB mp3)

They are now scheduled to undock aboard their Soyuz TMA-06M spacecraft at 7:43 p.m. EDT, heading for a landing in Kazakhstan northeast of the remote town of Arkalyk at 11:05 p.m. (9:05 a.m. Kazakh time Saturday morning). They will have spent 144 days in space since launching from Kazakhstan Oct. 23.

Eight of the twelve Russian MI-8 helicopters were deployed Friday morning from Kustanai to pre-stage locations in the towns of Arkalyk, near the prime landing zone, and Aktobe, well to the west at the leading edge of the ballistic landing zone. The other four helicopters with support personnel will deploy from Kustanai directly to the landing site early Saturday morning, Kazakh time. The forecast for landing is nearly ideal with just a few clouds expected and temperatures in the mid-teens.

NASA TV coverage of the Expedition 34 crew departure begins at 4 p.m. as the crew members bid their farewells and close the hatches between the vehicles at about 4:25 p.m. NASA TV undocking coverage begins at 7:15 p.m. Deorbit and landing coverage begins at 9:45 p.m. and will continue until the crew is safely in the medical tent at the landing site.

› Watch NASA TV

When the Soyuz undocks, Expedition 35 will begin aboard the station under the command of Chris Hadfield of the Canadian Space Agency. On Wednesday, Ford ceremonially passed the helm to Hadfield, the first Canadian commander of the station. Hadfield and his crewmates, NASA astronaut Tom Marshburn and Russian cosmonaut Roman Romanenko, will tend to the station for two weeks until the arrival of three new crew members: NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy and Russian cosmonauts Pavel Vinogradov and Alexander Misurkin.

› Watch the change of command ceremony

Aboard the station Friday, the departing crew members, Ford, Novitskiy and Tarelkin, spent their extra day in space reviewing Soyuz undocking and landing procedures and working with the remaining crew members on handover activities.

Ford and Hadfield discussed the current configuration of the Amine Swingbed hardware in EXPRESS Rack 8, going over the procedures for assembling and installing the payload back into the rack.

Marshburn participated in a periodic fitness evaluation, performing a graded exercise test to monitor his cardiovascular and musculoskeletal health. These fitness evaluations are used by doctors on Earth to ensure that a crew member stays healthy while living and working in the microgravity environment aboard the station.

Meanwhile at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in Star City, Russia, Cassidy, Vinogradov and Misurkin and their backups are wrapping-up a week of rest and administrative work in advance of their departure on Saturday to their launch site at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

› Read more about Expedition 35

arrow3.gifSource

Edited by Waspie_Dwarf

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Hatches Closed, Expedition 34 Crew Ready to Head Home

The hatches between the Soyuz TMA-06M spacecraft and the International Space Station were closed at 4:38 p.m. EDT Friday, wrapping up 142 days aboard the orbiting outpost for Expedition 34 Commander Kevin Ford and Flight Engineers Evgeny Tarelkin and Oleg Novitskiy. The trio is scheduled to undock from the station at 7:43 p.m.

After performing a deorbit burn, the Soyuz will be on track for a scheduled 11:05 p.m. landing in the steppe of Kazakhstan, northeast of the remote town of Arkalyk, wrapping up 144 days in space for the trio.

NASA TV undocking coverage begins at 7:15 p.m. Deorbit and landing coverage begins at 9:45 p.m. and will continue until the crew is safely in the medical tent at the landing site.

› Watch NASA TV

The undocking will mark the end of Expedition 34 and the start of Expedition 35 under the command of Canadian Space Agency astronaut Chris Hadfield, who is scheduled to remain on the station with Flight Engineers Tom Marshburn and Roman Romanenko until May. Ford ceremonially handed command of the station over to Hadfield on Wednesday. Hadfield, Marshburn and Romanenko arrived at the station aboard the Soyuz TMA-07M spacecraft in December 2012.

› Watch the change of command ceremony

Hadfield, Marshburn and Romanenko will remain aboard the orbiting complex as a three-person crew until the March 28 launch and docking of Expedition 35 Flight Engineers Chris Cassidy, Pavel Vinogradov and Alexander Misurkin.

› Read more about Expedition 35

arrow3.gifSource

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Expedition 34 Bids Farewell to ISS

Expedition 34 Commander Kevin Ford of NASA, Soyuz Commander Oleg Novitskiy and Russian Flight Engineer Evgeny Tarelkin said their goodbyes to the International Space Station and its remaining residents before closing the hatch on their Soyuz spacecraft.

Source: NASAtelevision - YouTube Channel

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