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Soyuz MS-11 returns the station crew to Earth after 204 days in space



24th June 2019

– A Russian cosmonaut and US and Canadian astronaut returned to Earth after more than 200 days aboard the International Space Station.

Oleg Kononenko of the Russian space agency Roscosmos Anne McClain of NASA and the Canadian astronaut David Saint-Jacques landed on Monday (June 24) aboard the Russian space probe Soyuz MS-11. The capsule lowered by parachutes and braked by brake lights landed southeast of the city Dzhezkazgan in the steppe of Kazakhstan at 22:47 clock. EDT (0247 GMT or 8:47 local time on 25 June).

The landing ended the crew's 204-day mission, while the 58th and 58th Space Station's Kononenko, McClain and Saint-Jacques served 59th expedition teams. The trio arrived on December 3, 201

8 in the orbital laboratory.

"About three and a half hours between docking and landing in Kazakhstan is described as a roller coaster or a washing machine – dynamic, but also a precise and highly choreographed process," McClain wrote about a week before his return home on Twitter.

Kononenko, McClain and Saint-Jacques returned to Earth at 19:25 EDT (2325 GMT) as their Soyuz MS-11 spacecraft diverged as planned from the space station's Poisk module. Their departure left Cosmonauts Aleksey Ovchinin of Roscosmos and NASA astronauts Christina Koch and Nick Hague to start Expedition 60.

A new crew of three, including Rocosmos' Aleksandr Skvortsov, NASA astronaut Drew Morgan and Luca Parmitano of the European Space Agency, are scheduled to launch the Soyuz MS-13 spacecraft on July 20.

On the ground in Kazakhstan, Kononenko, McClain and Saint-Jacques met representatives and medical teams from NASA and the Russian Federation, the Canadian Space Agency. The three Soyuz MS-11 crew members appeared to be in good spirits when they got used to gravity during brief medical exams.

"It's really amazing how the human mind and body can adapt to new environments, how that once incredible can become so normal," McClain wrote on Thursday (June 20), four days before her return to Earth, on twitter. "I encourage all people to do something outside of their comfort zone that forces them to adapt, and they'll be pleasantly surprised by their abilities."

Over the last six months, 58/59 expedition crew members helped hundreds of people carry out scientific experiments and oversaw the arrival and departure of multiple supply vessels. They were also in place to receive the US crew's first commercial spaceship, SpaceX's Crew Dragon, on its unmanned demo mission.

McClain and Saint-Jacques had fun with Crew-Z's zero-g indicator, a Planetary Pal of Celestial Buddies Earth plush that McClain called "Little Earth." She and Saint-Jacques took turns photographing the puppet around the space station and exchanging the images on Twitter for a great response.

McClain, Saint-Jacques and Kononenko also went on spacewalks. McClain and Saint-Jacques ventured out together to lay power and network cables for McClain's second and Saint-Jacques First Extraterrestrial Activity (EVA).

Kononenko added two more to his previous three space walks, including an EVA for cutting in and examining the location of a pressure leak in the Soyuz spacecraft MS-09.

"We have been trying to do all the assignments assigned to us," Kononenko said during a brief ceremony to change the command on Sunday (June 23). on board the space station. "All the crew members took part in our spacewalks, we all did a lot of experimentation, a lot of repair work was done, and we were lucky enough to work together."

Expedition 58/59 was Kononenko's fourth stay on the International Space Station. He has now logged more than 737 days before Earth, occupying sixth place in the world for the most accumulated time in space.

McClain and Saint-Jacques have completed their first space mission. Saint-Jacques now holds the record for the longest single-space flight of a Canadian astronaut.

Kononenko, McClain and Saint-Jacques were flown from their landing pad by Russian helicopter to Kononenko for a welcome ceremony in the Kazakh city of Karaganda. Departure to Star City near Moscow. McClain and Saint-Jacques board a NASA jet for the return flight to the Johnson Space Center in Houston.

Soyuz MS-11 was the 57th Russian Soyuz spacecraft, which flew to the International Space Station. It covered a total of 86.4 million miles (139 million kilometers) on Earth's 3,264 orbits.


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