European Space Agency (ESA) Astronaut Paolo Nespoli, IZ0JPA, NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik, and Russian cosmonaut Sergey Ryazanskiy will head to the International Space Station (ISS) on July 28. They will launch from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The Expedition 52/53 crew will spend more than 4 months together aboard the orbital complex before returning to Earth in December.
After launching in their Soyuz MS-05 spacecraft, the trio will travel for 6 hours before docking. Once the hatches between the Soyuz and ISS open, Expedition 52 Commander Fyodor Yurchikhin, RN3FI, and Flight Engineers Peggy Whitson, ex-KC5ZTD, and Jack Fischer, K2FSH, will welcome the new crew members aboard. Their arrival will double the population of the ISS.
Expedition 52 will continue work on hundreds of experiments in biology, biotechnology, physical science and Earth science aboard the ISS, NASA said.