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A Soyuz capsule carrying 3 crew from the International Space Station lands safely in Kazakhstan

MOSCOW (AP) — A Russian space capsule with two women and one man safely landed in a steppe in Kazakhstan on Saturday after their missions aboard the International Space Station.

The Soyuz MS-24 carrying Russia’s Oleg Novitsky, NASA’s Loral O’Hara and Marina Vasilevskaya of Belarus touched down southeast of the remote town of Dzhezkazgan at 12:17 p.m. Kazakh time (0717 GMT).

Those remaining at the orbiting outpost are NASA astronauts Michael Barratt, Matthew Dominick, Tracy Dyson and Jeannette Epps as well as Russian cosmonauts Nikolai Chub, Alexander Grebenkin and Oleg Kononenko.

O’Hara arrived at the International Space Station on Sept. 15, 2023, spending a total of 204 days there, NASA said.

Novitsky and Vasilevskaya blasted off to space on March 23, two days later than initially planned. The launch of a Soyuz spacecraft carrying them and Dyson, scheduled for March 21, was aborted at the very last minute due to a voltage drop in a power source, according to Yury Borisov, head of Russia’s space agency Roscosmos.

The delay resulted in a two-day, 34-orbit trip to the space station for the crew. If the launch had gone as scheduled, the journey would have been much shorter, requiring only two orbits.

The space station, which has served as a symbol of post-Cold War international cooperation, is now one of the last remaining areas of collaboration between Russia and the West amid tensions over Moscow’s military action in Ukraine. NASA and its partners hope to continue operating the orbiting outpost until 2030.

Russia has continued to rely on modified versions of Soviet-designed rockets for commercial satellites, as well as crews and cargo to the space station.

Article Topic Follows: AP National

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