Canadian astronaut Saint-Jacques 'astounded' by voyage to space station

Canadian astronaut Saint-Jacques 'astounded' by voyage to space station

Soyuz-FG carrier rocket with Soyuz MS-11 manned transport vehicle that delivered the global crew to the ISS blasted off Baikonur Cosmodrome on 3 December 2018, at 14:31 Moscow time. The new crew includes Anne McClain of NASA, David Saint-Jacques of the Canadia Space Agency, and Oleg Kononenko of Roscosmos.

It is reported by Roscosmos on Monday, December 3, reports the Chronicle.info with reference to the Correspondent.

The Soyuz carrying Anne McClain of NASA, David Saint-Jacques of the Canadian Space Agency, and Oleg Konenenko of Roscosmos launched at 6:31 a.m. EST (5:31 p.m. Baikonur time) from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Russian investigators blamed that malfunction, which occurred as the first and second stages of a booster rocket separated, on a damaged sensor. The crew planned to dock with the International Space Station about six hours after the launch and will live in orbit for six months.

It was the first manned launch for the Soviet-era Soyuz since Oct 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. The crew will join American Serena Auñón-Chancellor, Germany's Alexander Gerst and Russia's Sergey Prokopyev, all of whom are already living on the orbital station.

Initially scheduled for December 20th, the space launch was advanced to Monday to ensure a permanent presence of astronauts in the ISS, given that the current team must return to Earth on December 20th.

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Meanwhile, NASA astronaut Nick Hague, KG5TMV, who was on the aborted October 11 Soyuz launch, is getting ready for another try.

The new crew to the station will be tasked with a number of experiments for various organizations on Earth, including biology, Earth science, human research, physical sciences and technology development.

In fact, NASA said in its announcement that Soyuz MS-10 got high enough that it is counting the mission as a spaceflight, even though the crew did not reach orbit.

The first manned space mission to the since an unprecedented accident in October, which raised concerns about Moscow's Soviet-designed spacecraft, will launch on Monday.

Speaking in French, Saint-Jacques said he watched his first sunset from space and called it "breathtaking".

He'll be observing the effects of space on bone density, ocular pressure, and even the brain - all in the hopes of helping NASA figure out how to physically prepare astronauts for a potential mission to Mars.

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