Start of new ISS mission is scheduled for July 24th – 25th

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The next ISS mission postponed due to crash of Progress M-27M, was rescheduled from May 26th to July 24th – 25th, RIA Novosti reports with a source close to the space industry.

“According to updated plans, Soyuz TMA-17M with the next ISS crew should be launched on July 24th, backup date is July 25th. The next ISS crew comprises Oleg Kononenko (Roscosmos), Kimiya Yui (JAXA) and Kjell Lindgren (NASA),” the source said.

Moreover, the new date for adjusting the ISS orbit was set in order to create optimal ballistic conditions for return of the current ISS crew to Earth.

“It was initially planned that the crew comprising Anton Shkaplerov (Roscosmos), Samantha Cristoforetti (ESA) and Terry Virts (NASA) would return to Earth on May 14th. However, due to crash of Progress M-27M cargo spacecraft they will have to stay at the ISS until mid-June. On May 16th the orbit was adjusted using Progress M-26M cargo spacecraft,” the source added.

The upgraded Soyuz-2.1a launch vehicle with Progress M-27M cargo spacecraft was launched from Baikonur on April 28th. Abnormal separation of the spacecraft from the third stage of the LV took place; as a result the cargo spacecraft started an erratic flight with a significant spin, so the docking of the spacecraft with ISS was cancelled.

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