Feature

Text Size

Expedition 32 Crew Expands to Six
07.17.12
 
The six-member Expedition 32 crew

The six-member Expedition 32 crew gathers in the Zvezda service module for a welcoming ceremony. Credit: NASA TV

Soyuz TMA-05M approaches the station

The Soyuz TMA-05M carrying Expedition 32 crew members Yuri Malenchenko, Sunita Williams and Akihiko Hoshide approaches the International Space Station. Credit: NASA TV

Expedition 32 Flight Engineers Suni Williams, Yuri Malenchenko and Aki Hoshide have arrived at the International Space Station after two days in orbit. The new trio docked its Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft to the Rassvet module at 12:51 a.m. EDT Tuesday.

› View video of docking

The hatches between the Soyuz and the Rassvet module opened at 3:23 a.m. and Commander Gennady Padalka and Flight Engineers Joe Acaba and Sergei Revin greeted their new crewmates. The six-member crew conducted a welcoming ceremony with family and mission officials then participated in a safety briefing.

› View video of hatch opening

Williams, Malenchenko and Hoshide launched at 10:40 p.m. EDT Saturday (8:40 a.m. Kazakhstan time on Sunday) from Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan. They are expected to live and work aboard the orbital laboratory until November.

› Watch the launch video
› Read more about the launch

The launch and docking of Expedition 32 coincides with the 37th anniversary of the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project, the first docking of an American spacecraft with a Russian spacecraft. An Apollo spacecraft from Kennedy Space Center and a Soyuz 7K-TM vehicle from Baikonur Cosmodrome launched on July 15, 1975, then docked two days later.

American astronauts Commander Thomas Stafford, Command Module Pilot Vance Brand and Docking Module Pilot Donald Slayton were aboard the Apollo spacecraft. Russian cosmonauts Commander Alexei Leonov and Flight Engineer Valeri Kubasov were aboard the Soyuz 7K-TM. Stafford and Leonov shook hands after the hatches opened, the first time international crew members greeted each other in space.

› Read more about Apollo-Soyuz

› Read more about Expedition 32