The original launch date of September 23 was postponed due to a technical issue with the Soyuz spacecraft, which Roscosmos repaired, NASA said in a statement.
Three crew members of Expedition 49/50 are all set for the launch to the International Space Station (ISS) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan today.
As per NASA, three astronauts which include Shane Kimbrough, along with Roscosmos cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Andrey Borisenko, will travel for two days in the Soyuz MS-02 spacecraft to test upgraded spacecraft systems before docking to the space station’s Poisk module at 5:59 a.m. Friday, Oct. 21. NASA TV coverage of the docking will begin at 5:15 a.m.
Hatches between the Soyuz and station will open at approximately 8:35 a.m., and the arriving crew will be welcomed on board by Expedition 49 Commander Anatoly Ivanishin of Roscosmos and Flight Engineers Kate Rubins of NASA and Takuya Onishi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, who have been aboard the complex since July. NASA TV coverage of hatch opening and welcoming ceremonies will begin at 8 a.m.
Watch Video: The Soyuz Rolls Out to the Launch Pad
According to NASA, the launch will take place at 4:05 a.m. EDT Wednesday, October 19 (2:05 p.m. Baikonur time), 1:35 p.m IST, from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
NASA television and the agency’s website will cover the live coverage of the launch at 3:15 a.m, 12:45 p.m India time. You can watch the live coverage here, courtesy NASA TV
The three astronauts will spend a little more than four months together aboard the orbital complex before returning to Earth in late February. The full six-person crew will continue work on hundreds of experiments in biology, biotechnology, physical science and Earth science aboard the International Space Station, humanity’s only microgravity laboratory.
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