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03-26-09: Expedition 19 crew launches to Space Station

  • 26 March 2009
  • Written by 
  • Published in Space
At 6:49:18 a.m. CDT on Thursday, March 26, 2009, two crewmembers of the nineteenth team to live on the International Space Station (ISS) was launched into orbit, along with a wealthy spaceflight participant. The crew will be part of a historic doubling of capacity for the Space Station.


The members of the ISS Expedition 19 crew that were launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan were NASA astronaut Michael Barratt and Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka, along with spaceflight participant Charles Simonyi.

The Soyuz TMA-14 (in Russian: Союз ТМА-14, or, Union TMA-14) spacecraft was lifted off the ground (at 11:49:18 UTC) and into space by a Soyuz-FG rocket.

According to the NASA media brief New astronaut crew launches to International Space Station, “They are scheduled to dock with the station at 8:14 a.m. Saturday, March 28. Padalka, his third flight into space, will serve as commander of Expeditions 19 and 20 aboard the station. Barratt, his first flight to space, will serve as a flight engineer for those two missions. Padalka and Barratt's other crewmate is Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. He arrived to the station March 17 on space shuttle Discovery.”

Wealthy Hungarian-American computer software executive Charles Simonyi is flying for the second time into space as a spaceflight participant. He has a commercial agreement with the Russian Federal Space Agency (RSA). Simonyi’s first trip into space was in April 2007, when he also visited the ISS.

Simonyi will return to Earth on April 7, after ten days in space, with ISS Expedition 18 crewmembers Michael Fincke (commander) and Yury Lonchakov (flight engineer). They will return to Earth in their Soyuz TMA-13 spacecraft.

These Expedition crewmembers have spent since October 2008 manning the International Space Station.

Page two talks about the historic Expedition 20 crew, which will expand the crew members from three to six.




The new Expedition crewmembers will be a part of the first six-person crew for the Space Station—the ISS Expedition 20 crew.

On May 27, 2009, Russian cosmonaut Roman Romanenko, European Space Agency astronaut Frank De Winne, and U.S. astronaut Bob Thirsk are scheduled to be launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome inside their Soyuz TMA-15 spacecraft.

They will arrive at the Space Station two days later for the historic doubling of capacity of the orbiting space facility.

In addition, NASA states, “After all the astronauts are aboard, Expedition 20 will begin, ushering in an era of six-person station crews. This mission also will be the first time the crew members represent all five International Space Station partners.”

These five members are the United States (space agency: NASA), Russia (RSA), Canada (CSA), Japan (JAXA), and the European Union (ESA).

For more information about the space station and how to view it from Earth, visit http://www.nasa.gov/station.

For additional information on crewmember assignments for the ISS through 2010, read NASA media brief "NASA Assigns Space Station Crews, Updates Expedition Numbering ."


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