March 26, 2020

At the Baikonur cosmodrome, the final stage of preparation of the main and backup crews of the “Soyuz MS-16” manned spacecraft for flight under the program of the 63rd main expedition to the International Space Station has begun.

On March 25, 2020, cosmonauts and astronauts arrived in the Assembly and Testing building of platform № 254 for the first training (“fitting”) in the ship.

In accordance with the training schedule, the crews tried on their spacesuits, tested them for leaks and took places in the ship.

Then they checked the equipment, got acquainted with the flight documentation, studied the program of the upcoming flight and the list of goods, planned for delivery to the station.

The “fitting” of the ship and flight suits was supervised by specialists from Roscosmos State Corporation.

Further studies of the expedition at Baikonur include training on the manual docking of the “Soyuz MS” manned spacecraft to the ISS, control of scientific equipment, development of ballistic operations and other preparatory procedures.

The main crew of the ISS-63 is Roscosmos cosmonauts Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Wagner, NASA astronaut Christopher Cassidy.

The backup crew included Roscosmos cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Andrey Babkin, NASA astronaut Stephen Bowen.

The launch of the “Soyuz-2.1a” launch vehicle with the “Soyuz MS-16” manned spacecraft to the International Space Station is scheduled for April 9, 2020 at 11:05 (Moscow time) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome.

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