Expedition One Crew Completes First Week In Space
Two cosmonauts and an astronaut were launched to the International Space Station Oct.31, pioneering a new trend in human space exploration and development.
A Soyuz TM-31 rocket roared toward space from launch pad one at Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 2:53 a.m. EST. The crew docked with the International Space Station Nov. 2 and began a four-month mission aboard the orbiting laboratory.
On Nov. 7, the crew continued to set up station as they installed the final cables into a Russian Elektron oxygen generation system. The crew also installed a television monitor for the back-up rendezvous system that will be used if the automated system fails when a Progress cargo ship rendezvous with the station. The next Progress ship is scheduled to dock with the station on Nov. 18.
Throughout the next few months, ISS will continue to grow as construction continues. In December, the shuttle Endeavor will deliver a giant solar power array, and in January, the Atlantis will bring up the main American scientific module, Destiny.
In February, Expedition Two will replace Shepherd’s team and scientific experiments will begin under the command of a Russian cosmonaut. Expedition One will return to Earth aboard Discovery, leaving the Soyuz craft at station to act as an interim “life boat” until a crew return vehicle is completed.