Successful Return of Soyuz Capsule
The most reliable Russian launch vehicle to date 'The Soyuz spacecraft', returned to Earth thus putting an end to their 193-day mission to the International Space Station. The capsule that descended safely Sunday on the southern steppes of Kazakhstan had on board three-man multinational crew.
Soyuz was carrying Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko, NASA astronaut Don Pettit and European Space Agency astronaut Andre Kuipers who touched down with its parachute in a cloud of dust at 0814 GMT. While the other Russians Gennady Padalka and Sergei Revin and U.S. astronaut Joseph Acaba are expected to remain onboard the space station for a further three months and will be joined later this month by NASA astronaut Sunita Williams, Russia's Yury Malenchenko and Japanese astronaut Aki Hoshide. They will take off on a Soyuz spaceship from the Baikonur cosmodrome in southern Kazakhstan
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Exactly 2 days after China's Shenzou9 spacecraft returned to Earth, Souyz return was also remarkable landing in a perfect upright textbook landing, and erected ladders to help the crew come out. The voyage from the space station started 3 -1/2 hours earlier, when it undocked and began a slow, gentle drift away.
A Soyuz spacecraft were used to carry astronauts to and from Salyut and later Mir Soviet space stations, and are now used for transport to and from the International Space Station (ISS) and at least one of this is always docked to ISS for use as an escape craft in the event of an emergency.
Ever since the removal of the space shuttles last year, it is noticed that the United States is dependent on Russia to fly astronauts to the International Space Station.