First manned Soyuz mission to ISS since October failure

Three astronauts will spend the next six-and-a-half months on the space station
A Soyuz rocket carrying Russian, American and Canadian astronauts took off from Kazakhstan and reached orbit on Monday, in the first manned mission since a failed launch in October. Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko, Anne McClain of NASA and David Saint-Jacques of the Canadian Space Agency blasted off for a six-and-a-half month mission on the International Space Station at 1131 GMT. A few minutes after their rocket lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Russian space agency Roscomos announced that the capsule was “successfully launched into orbit”. NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine confirmed on Twitter that the crew were “safely in orbit” and thanked the U.S. and Russian teams “for their dedication to making this launch a success”. It was the first manned launch for the Soviet-era Soyuz since October 11, when a rocket carrying Russia’s Aleksey Ovchinin and U.S. astronaut Nick Hague failed just minutes after blast-off, forcing the pair to make an emergency landing. They escaped unharmed but the failed launch — the first such incident in Russia’s post-Soviet history — raised concerns about the state of the Soyuz programme. The Soyuz is the only means of reaching the ISS since the U.S. retired the space shuttle in 2011. Mr. Kononenko, Ms. McClain and Mr. Saint-Jacques showed no signs of worry as they boarded a bus to take them to the launch. They smiled and waved, with Saint-Jacques blowing kisses and giving the thumbs-up to a crowd of well-wishers. At a press conference on the eve of the launch, crew commander Kononenko said the crew was prepared and that “risk is part of our profession.”
Source :  https://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-life/first-manned-soyuz-mission-to-iss-since-october-failure/article25658691.ece

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