Europe’s ATV-3 unmanned resupply spacecraft raised the International Space Station (ISS) orbit to about 420 kilometers, a mission control spokesman said on Wednesday.
ATV-3 engines were fired up at 1:15 p.m. Moscow time [09:15 GMT] in the first of the two maneuvers to adjust the ISS orbit and remained switched on for 384 seconds, raising the ISS orbit to 414.8 km
The second reboost began at 5:17 p.m. Moscow time [13:17 GMT] and continued for almost 35 minutes, raising the station’s orbit to an average altitude of 420.6 km.
The maneuver was carried out to ensure the best conditions for the landing of Russia’s Soyuz TMA-04M manned spacecraft on September 17 and the docking of the Soyuz TMA-06M manned spacecraft with the ISS on October 15.
During the ISS orbital adjustment on August 15 the ATV-3's engines shut down prematurely because of an increase in temperature on one of the freighter's engines that was not involved in the maneuver. As a result, the ATV lifted the ISS orbit only by five kilometers instead of the planned 7.7 km.