MOSCOW, November 19 (RIA Novosti) – The Soyuz TMA-05M manned spacecraft undocked from the International Space Station (ISS) on Monday, beginning is voyage to bring three ISS crew members to Earth after 127 days in orbit.
A mission control spokesman said the spacecraft undocked in the automated mode as scheduled, at 2:26 Monday.
The deorbit burn will begin at 4.59 Moscow time (0:59 GMT), and the spacecraft will enter the atmosphere at 5:29 at the altitude of 102 km. The touchdown is scheduled for 5:53 Monday (1:53 GMT), some 87 km northeast of the town of Arkalyk in Kazakhstan.
Russian Cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko, NASA astronaut Sunita Williams and JAXA astronaut Akihiko Hoshide arrived to the station aboard the same spacecraft in July.
A mission control spokesman earlier said the Soyuz carries return load and items to be disposed of during the destructive re-entry.
“The return load that consists of various equipment and results of scientific experiments, will return to Earth together with the crew, in the re-entry capsule. Items for disposal, packed in the service module, are to burn in the atmosphere,” the spokesman said.
The ISS team now lists Russian cosmonauts Oleg Novitsky and Yevgeny Tarelkin, as well as NASA astronaut Kevin Ford.
They will be joined by Russian cosmonaut Roman Romanenko, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield and NASA astronaut Thomas Marshburn, who are currently undergoing launch training near Moscow. They are scheduled to blast off onboard the Soyuz TMA-07M from the Baikonur space center in Kazakhstan on December 19.
Russian Soyuz-family spacecraft will remain the only means of transportation for crew members to and from the orbital station until at least 2016. Soyuz TMA-05M is the 114th flight of a Soyuz spacecraft.