NASA astronaut Kjell Lindgren (left to right), Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko and Japanese astronaut Kimiya Yui. Source: Roscosmos
Russia's Soyuz TMA-17M spacecraft with three crewmembers onboard, which was launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome on July 23, has successfully docked to the MIM-1 small research module of the International Space Station's (ISS) Russian segment following a six-hour autonomous flight, a spokesman for the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) has said.
"The docking has been conducted automatically," he said.
One of the solar panels onboard the Soyuz TMA-17M failed to unfold during the flight.
"The left solar panel did not unfold during the launch on July 23. The second panel is functioning normally and is fully proving the spacecraft with the required amount of power," the spokesman said.
The hatches separating the spacecraft and the ISS will be opened approximately in an hour after it is confirmed that the Soyuz is hermetically sealed with the station and pressure levels are equalized between them.
The Soyuz TMA-17M is carrying the 44th/45th ISS mission, which includes Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko, Japanese astronaut Kimiya Yui and NASA astronaut Kjell Lindgren.
This Soyuz crew was initially expected to fly to the ISS on May 26, but the launch was then postponed following the loss of a Progress re-supply ship in April.
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