Two days before launch…

ESA’s mission director Roland Luettgens writes:

Two days before launch the teams that are supporting the mission are settling in at the Columbus Control Centre. Today we have the first Mission Management Team meeting to look into the plan of the first few days of the mission, in particular the day of arrival.

The launch is set and the events between launch and docking are defined. After launch on 2 September a period of two days until docking begins, the so-called orbit insertion. These two days are low activity days for the crew inside the Soyuz, performing a set of manoeuvres to bring the Soyuz from the approximately 220 km altitude to the right orbit for docking to the International Space Station.

Sequence of events from launch to docking, all times in GMT.

Sequence of events from launch to docking, all times in GMT.

The teams at the launch site in Baikonur report that the astronauts and ground team are in a good moods and perfect conditions are expected for the launch on Wednesday.

Of course we could feel a bit nervous as every launch with astronauts is a special event. In particular for us it is a very special mission with Andreas Mogensen. The iriss mission is a “sprint” mission, where every minute of his stay in orbit is precisely planned. There is no room for mistakes and the plan is the key for the success of his mission.

Roll out of Soyuz launcher from MIK 112 to Pad 1.

Roll out of Soyuz launcher from MIK 112 to Pad 1.

 

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