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article imageVideo: Three-man ISS crew returns safely to terra firma

By Anne Sewell     Sep 11, 2013 in Science
The Expedition 36 crew members, comprising two Russian Cosmonauts and one NASA astronaut returned safely to Earth on Wednesday after 166 days in space, on board a Russian Soyuz spacecraft.
NASA astronaut, Christopher Cassidy, along with the two Russian cosmonauts, Pavel Vinogradov and Alexander Misurkin returned on board a Russian Soyuz spacecraft, landing in Kazakhstan at 10:58 p.m. Tuesday (8:58 a.m. Kazakhstan time Wednesday).
The trio undocked from the Poisk mini-research module in their Soyuz TMA-08M spacecraft at 7:37 p.m. EDT, ending a 5-and-a-half month stay at the International Space Station.
The day before their departure, in a traditional Change of Command Ceremony in the Zvezda service module, Vinogradov handed over control of the ISS to Flight Engineer Fyodor Yurchikhin.
Yurchikhin is now officially the station commander of the ISS and he and Flight Engineers Karen Nyberg and Luca Parmitano are now the Expedition 37 crew.
Three planes, twelve Mi-8 helicopters as well as six rescue vehicles and 14 auxiliary vehicles were on scene to recover the crew.
After 166 days in space, once they have been examined by Russian media staff, Cassidy is expected to return to Ellington Field in Houston, and Vinogradov and Misurkin will fly back to Star City, outside Moscow.
Expedition 36 handover ceremony on board the ISS.
Expedition 36 handover ceremony on board the ISS.
Meanwhile future crew members, Oleg Kotov, MIke Hopkins and Sergey Ryazanskiy are waiting to join Expedition 37. They are in Kazakhstan preparing for a September 25 launch in their Soyuz TMA-10M spacecraft.
The video below shows the three previous crew members giving fond farewells just prior to leaving the ISS:
More about International Space Station, Iss, Crew, Returns, Earth
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