Expedition 54/55 Crew Ready for Flight

Image credit & copyright: NASA/Joel Kowsky.

Launch Alert! Sunday, December 17, 2017 at 02:21 EST (07:21 UTC & 13:21 Baikonur time) a Soyuz-FG rocket; MS-07 (ISS 53S or Soyuz 55) will lift off from Launch Pad 1/Launcher 5 (LC 1/5) at the legendary Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The Soyuz spacecraft will carry three crew members of Expedition 54/55 on a two-day, 34 orbit trip to the International Space Station (ISS) vs. the usual six-hour, four-orbit “fast-track” launch to docking.   This change isn’t spacecraft related as the original December 27 launch date would have allowed for the fast-track docking but the holidays moved the launch up 10 days to accommodate. This will be the 7th flight of the upgraded Soyuz which replaced the TMA series.

Soyuz MS-07 will dock to the nadir, (Earth facing) port of the Russian Mini Research Module-2 (MRM-2) Poisk “Search” module 34 orbits later and that capsule will remain there for approximately 6 months as a crew escape vehicle should they need it and ultimately a return vehicle.

Want to see the ISS overhead? Here’s everything you need! https://danspace77.com/iss-tracking/

CREW OF: Soyuz MS-07, Soyuz 55, ISS 53S or Expedition 54/55

NASA astronaut, Scott Tingle “Maker”:

NASA bio: https://www.nasa.gov/astronauts/biographies/scott-d-tingle

NASA JSC bio: https://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/tingle.pdf

Roscosmos bio: https://www.energia.ru/en/iss/iss54/tingle.html

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Astro_Maker

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/astro_maker/

Roscosmos cosmonaut, Anton Shkaplerov:

Roscosmos bio: https://www.energia.ru/en/iss/iss54/shkaplerov.html

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Anton_Astrey

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/anton_astrey/

JAXA astronaut, Norishige Kanai:

JAXA bio: http://iss.jaxa.jp/en/astro/biographies/kanai/index.html

Roscosmos bio: https://www.energia.ru/en/iss/iss54/kanai.html

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Astro_Kanai?lang=en


NASA astronaut: Joe Acaba:

NASA bio: https://www.nasa.gov/astronauts/biographies/joseph-m-acaba

NASA JSC bio: https://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/acaba-jm.pdf

Roscosmos bio: https://www.energia.ru/en/iss/iss53/acaba.html

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AstroAcaba

Roscosmos cosmonaut, Alexander Misurkin:

Roscosmos bio: https://www.energia.ru/en/iss/iss53/misurkin.html

NASA JSC bio: https://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/misurkin.html

NASA astronaut, Mark Vande Hei:

NASA bio: https://www.nasa.gov/astronauts/biographies/mark-t-vande-hei

NASA JSC bio: https://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/htmlbios/vande-hei.pdf

Roscosmos bio: https://www.energia.ru/en/iss/iss53/vandehei.html

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Astro_Sabot

The Soyuz TMA-20M spacecraft is rolled out to the launch pad by train in the early hours of Wednesday, March 16, 2016 at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. Launch of the Soyuz rocket is scheduled for March 19 and will carry Expedition 47 Soyuz Commander Alexey Ovchinin of Roscosmos, Flight Engineer Jeff Williams of NASA, and Flight Engineer Oleg Skripochka of Roscosmos into orbit to begin their five and a half month mission on the International Space Station. Photo Credit: (NASA/Aubrey Gemignani)

The Rocket:

Russian Roscosmos Soyuz FG is a three-stage, medium lift rocket developed and manufactured by the Progress State Research and Production Rocket Space Center (TSsKB Progress). The FG was introduced in 2001 to deliver humans to the International Space Station (ISS). It’s derived from the Soyuz U rocket which is the most flown rocket in history with almost 800 launches and delivered Progress vehicles to the ISS until the recent addition of the Soyuz 2.   The Soyuz “Union” rocket family is the most used space launch system in history with more than 1700 launches and traces its roots back to 1957 in the form of the Soviet R7 missile.


Third Stage (Assembly 1): The third stage, which would really be a second stage on other rockets is 6.7 m in length and 2.6 m in diameter and is powered by a single RD-0110 engine in a four thrust chamber configuration. It utilizes Kerosene fuel and Liquid Oxygen oxidizer and burns for about 230 seconds. You will notice a lattice-like framework between the second (core) stage and the third stage. That’s because third stage ignition utilizes a “hot fire” ignition where it ignites just before second stage separation.

Second Stage (Core Unit): The core stage of the Soyuz is odd in the fact that it burns during the first and second stage of the rocket. As the rocket lifts off, it and the boosters work together as the first stage then after the strap on boosters are jettisoned the core stage continues to operate as the then second stage.

The core (1st & 2nd stage) stage is 27.1 m in length and 2.95 m in diameter and is powered by a single RD-108A engine in a four cruise thrust chamber configuration. It utilizes Kerosene fuel, Liquid Oxygen oxidizer and burns for a total of about 280-290 seconds. Attitude control is powered by four Vernier thrusters.

First Stage/Boosters (Lateral Assembly): The Soyuz is equipped with four strap-on boosters that are used during first stage flight. They are each 19.6 m in length and 2.68 m in diameter and are each powered by a single RD-107A engine four cruise thrust chamber configuration. They utilize Kerosene fuel and Liquid Oxygen oxidizer and burn for approximately 118 seconds before being jettisoned and creating what’s known as the Korolev Cross. Attitude control is powered by two Vernier thrusters.

Watch Live:

Launch coverage: Sunday, December 17 at 01:15 EST (06:15 UTC).

Docking coverage: Tuesday, December 19 at 03:00 EST (08:00UTC).

Hatch opening coverage: Tuesday, December 19 at 05:00 EST (10:00 UTC).

NASA TV: http://www.nasa.gov/ntv

NASA TV on Ustream: http://www.ustream.tv/nasahdtv

NASA Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NASA/

NASA YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/NASA

NASA TV schedule: http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/schedule.html

Mission Information:

NASA Expedition 54/55 press release: https://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-television-coverage-set-for-space-station-crew-landing-launch

NASA ISS Expedition 54/55: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/expeditions/expedition54/index.html

RSC Energia MS-07 Images: https://www.energia.ru/english/index.html

NASA HQ Exp. 54/55 Images: https://www.flickr.com/photos/nasahqphoto/albums/72157661591055317/with/27289535709/

HASA Johnson Exp. 54/55 Images: https://www.flickr.com/photos/nasa2explore/albums/72157682170716755

Soyuz MS-07 Wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soyuz_MS-07

NASA Blogs ISS: https://blogs.nasa.gov/spacestation/

Spaceflight Now Exp. 54 Page: https://spaceflightnow.com/2017/12/13/space-station-crew-returns-thursday-replacements-launch-sunday/

Spaceflight 101 Exp. 54 Page: https://spaceflight101.com/soyuz-ms-07/category/expedition-54/

General 2017 Launch List: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_in_spaceflight

General ISS Pages:

All NASA Social Media: https://www.nasa.gov/socialmedia

NASA’s HDEV 24hr LIVE streaming feed from the ISS: https://danspace77.com/2014/05/07/nasahdev-deliver-live-streaming-view-of-earth-from-the-iss/

NASA ISS main mission page: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/main/

NASA ISS Blog: http://blogs.nasa.gov/spacestation/

ISS Main Twitter: https://twitter.com/Space_Station

ISS Research Twitter: https://twitter.com/ISS_Research

ISS CASIS Twitter: https://twitter.com/ISSCASIS?lang=en

ISS Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ISS

ISS CASIS Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ISSCASIS

ISS Instagram: http://instagram.com/iss

ISS CASIS Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/iss_casis/

NASA ISS multimedia pages: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/multimedia/index.html

NASA ISS Photos (All the photos you will ever need from the ISS): http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/gallery/images/station/index.html

NASA “2 Explore” Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nasa2explore/

NASA “HQ Photostream” Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/nasahqphoto/

NASA “Goddard” Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/gsfc/

NASA Spaceflight TMA-15M: http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php?topic=31414.0

Roscosmos homepage: http://www.federalspace.ru/

Great ISS schedule page: http://spaceflight101.com/iss/iss-calendar/

All ISS Expeditions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_International_Space_Station_expeditions

All Russian manned missions: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Russian_manned_space_missions


Main Site: http://en.roscosmos.ru/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Roscosmos

Twitter: https://twitter.com/roscosmos

Instagram: http://instagram.com/roscosmosofficial

Flickr: https://www.flickr.com/photos/roscosmos/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/tvroscosmos

S.P. Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation “RSC Energia”

Main Site: http://www.energia.ru/english/index.html

Progress Rocket Space Centre (TsSKB): 

Website: http://www.en.samspace.ru/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ProgressSamara

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ProgressSamara

Google Plus: https://plus.google.com/u/1/106131782714139419453/posts

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/ProgressSamara

Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center (GCTC):

Website: http://www.gctc.su/

Soyuz Rocket & Soyuz Spacecraft & Progress Spacecraft:

Soyuz Rocket Family: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soyuz_(rocket_family)

Soyuz 2 Rocket: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soyuz-2#Soyuz-2.1a

Soyuz 2 Rocket: http://spaceflight101.com/spacerockets/soyuz-2-1b/

Soyuz Spacecraft: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soyuz_(spacecraft)

Soyuz MS Spacecraft: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soyuz_MS

Soyuz Spacecraft Launch List: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Soyuz_missions

Progress Spacecraft: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progress_(spacecraft)

Progress Spacecraft Launch List: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Progress_missions

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