Expedition 27 Crew Returns Home
After spending 157 days aboard the International Space Station, Expedition 27 Commander Dmitry Kondratyev and Flight Engineers Cady Coleman and Paolo Nespoli landed safely at 10:27 p.m. EDT Monday, May 23 southeast of the town of Dzhezkazgan, Kazakhstan.
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Kondratyev, the Soyuz commander, was at the controls of the spacecraft. After undocking, he backed the Soyuz TMA-20 away from the station and halted it about 600 feet away. From there, Nespoli took still photographs and video of the complex while space shuttle Endeavour is docked at the station for the STS-134 mission. The station slowly rotated 130 degrees to provide Nespoli with the best lighting and views during the photo opportunity.
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Once Nespoli completed taking pictures, the Soyuz performed a separation burn at 6:15 p.m. to increase the distance from the station before executing a deorbit burn at 9:36 p.m.
The departure of Kondratyev, Coleman and Nespoli marked the end of Expedition 27. Remaining aboard the station are Expedition 28 Commander Andrey Borisenko, Expedition 28 Flight Engineers Ron Garan and Alexander Samokutyaev, and the visiting crew of STS-134.
Three new Expedition 28 crew members, Soyuz Commander Sergei Volkov and Flight Engineers Mike Fossum and Satoshi Furukawa will launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome on June 7. They will dock with the station and join Borisenko, Garan and Samokutyaev on June 9.
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