Crew Arrives at Space Station on Russian Spaceship

A spacecraft carrying the three newest residents of the International Space Station safely arrived at the orbiting outpost on November 16, after a two day space journey. NASA astronaut Dan Burbank and Russian cosmonauts Anton Shkaplerov and Anatoly Ivanishin reached the space station early Wednesday, slightly ahead of schedule at 12:24 a.m. EST (0524 GMT). The trio parked their Russian built Soyuz TMA-22 capsule at the Poisk mini research module on the station’s Russian segment, as both spacecraft flew 248 miles (400 kilometers) above the South Pacific. They launched into orbit on November 13 in the midst of blizzard conditions at the Baikonour Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The spaceflyers will live and work aboard the orbiting laboratory until March 2012. 

During their stay, Burbank, Shkaplerov and Ivanishin will be involved in a variety of research scientific experiments, ranging from life sciences to Earth observation projects. The arrival of the new crew members brings the population of the space station back up to its full capacity of six people, but not for long. Fossum, Japanese astronaut Satoshi Furukawa and Russian cosmonaut Sergei Volkov have been living on the orbiting complex since early June, but the trio is scheduled to return home in their Soyuz TMA-02M capsule on November 21.