MOSCOW, September 30 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's Soyuz-FG carrier rocket will lift off on Wednesday to deliver a manned spacecraft on a path to the International Space Station (ISS), the Russian space agency Roscosmos said.
The launch of the rocket carrying the Soyuz TMA-16 spacecraft on board has been scheduled for 11.15 Moscow time (07.15 GMT) from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan.
Soyuz TMA-16 will bring U.S. astronaut Jeffrey Williams, Russian cosmonaut Maxim Surayev, and a space tourist, Canadian billionaire Guy Laliberte to the ISS on October 2.
Williams and Surayev will replace Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka and U.S. astronaut Michael Barratt, who will return to Earth with Laliberte next month having been on the space station since March.
As part of Expedition 21/22, new members of the ISS crew will spend about half-a-year in orbit and carry out a number of tasks, including the unloading of three Russian Progress space freighters and a spacewalk to install a Russian MIM-2 scientific module.
They will also conduct 48 scientific experiments and work with crews of three U.S. space shuttles, which are scheduled to arrive at the orbital station during the next six months.