Three Expedition 54 astronauts have been launched to the International Space Station

The Soyuz MS-07 spacecraft blasting off atop a Soyuz rocket (Image NASA TV)
The Soyuz MS-07 spacecraft blasting off atop a Soyuz rocket (Image NASA TV)

A few hours ago the Soyuz MS-07 spacecraft blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan with aboard three new crew members to be transported to the International Space Station carrying three new crew members. This time the Soyuz traveled on the 2-day path instead of the 6-hour fast path used in the previous launches.

The three new members of the crew of the International Space Station, who complete the Expedition 54 crew, are:

Anton Nikolaevich Shkaplerov. Born on February 28, 1972 in Sevastopol, in the then USSR and now in Ukraine, he started flying when he was very young, so much that he completed flight training on the Yak-52 at the Sevastopol Aviation Club in 1989. He graduated from the Kachinsk Air Force Pilot School in 1994 as a pilot-engineer. He served as an instructor pilot in the Russian Air Force piloting various airplane models and as a parachute instructor. In 2003 he was selected as a cosmonaut candidate and started training. He already served on the International Space Station with the Expedition 29/30 and with the Expedition 42/43 that started on November 23, 2014. He’s married to Tatyana Petrovna and together they have two daughters.

Scott David Tingle. Born on 19 July 1965 in Attleboro, Massachusetts, USA, in 1987 he graduated in mechanical engineering from the Southeast University of Massachusetts. He joined the US Navy where he served as an airplane pilot, also in various missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2009 he was selected by NASA as an astronaut candidate and during the training he was part of the crew of the ESA CAVES 2014 mission in the Grotta Sa in Sardinia. He’s on his first space mission.

Norishige Kanai. Born in December 1976 in Tokyo, Japan, in 2002 he graduated in medicine at the National Defense Medical College. After working in various hospitals he entered the Medical Division of the Japan Self Defense Force. In 2009 he was selected as an astronaut candidate by JAXA and was part of the crew of the submarine mission NEEMO 16. He’s on his first space mission.

The new crew members are scheduled to reach the International Space Station Tuesday at 8:43 AM UTC and will return to Earth in April 2018. On the International Space Station, they will carry out routine maintenance, a long series of scientific experiments and manage the arrival and the departure of various spacecraft.

Norishige Kanai, Anton Shkaplerov and Scott Tingle (Photo NASA/Elizabeth Weissinger)
Norishige Kanai, Anton Shkaplerov and Scott Tingle (Photo NASA/Elizabeth Weissinger)

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