At 10:42 Moscow time on the 9th, the Russian Soyuz-2.1a launch vehicle was successfully launched from the Baikonur Space Center in Kazakhstan, sending the Soyuz MS-18 manned spacecraft to the International Space Station.
The Soyuz MS-18 carried three people, Russian astronauts Oleg Nowitzki, Peter Dubrov and American astronaut Van der Hei.
After launching for 8 minutes and 50 seconds, the spacecraft separated from the third-stage rocket. According to the information released by Roscosmos, the spacecraft will dock with the International Space Station after 3 hours and 25 minutes of flight.
Three astronauts will stay at the space station for at least 191 days and complete two spacewalk missions. In addition, three people have been vaccinated against the novel coronavirus.
According to the International Telegraph Service, Russia is currently negotiating with relevant countries to extend the “decommissioning” period of the International Space Station from the established 2024 to 2030.
In early March, Giddenko, deputy director of the Spacecraft and Launch Equipment Flight Applications Center of the Russian “Energy” rocket space group, said that the senior government of the Russian government had decided to extend the use of the International Space Station until 2028.