Astronauts Rocket Into Space Aboard Soyuz Spacecraft - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Astronauts Rocket Into Space Aboard Soyuz Spacecraft

HUFFINGTONPOST.COM - A Soyuz spacecraft carrying a Russian, an American and a Dutchman to the International Space Station blasted off flawlessly from Russia's launch facility in Kazakhstan on Wednesday.

Mission commander Oleg Kononenko and his colleagues, American Don Pettit and European Space Agency astronaut Andre Kuipers are to dock with the space station on Friday.

The blastoff from the snowy launchpad in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, took place without a hitch and the spacecraft reached Earth orbit about nine minutes later. Video from inside the craft showed the three crew members gripping each others' hands in celebration as the final stage of the booster rocket separated.

The three aboard the Russian spacecraft will join three others already on the ISS, NASA's Dan Burbank and Russians Anton Shkaplerov and Anatoly Ivanishin. The six are to work together on the station until March.

The launch came amid a period of trouble for Russia's space program, which provides the only way for crew to reach the space station since the United States retired its space shuttle program in July.

The launch of an unmanned supply ship for the space station failed in August and the ship crashed in a Siberian forest. The Soyuz rocket carrying that craft was the same type used to send up Russian manned spacecraft, and the crash prompted officials to postpone the next manned launch while the rockets were examined for flaws. The delayed mission eventually took place on Nov. 14.

Just five days before that launch, Russia sent up its ambitious Phobos-Ground unmanned probe, which was to go to the Phobos moon of Mars, take soil samples and return them to Earth. But engineers lost contact with the ship and were unable to propel it out of Earth orbit and toward Mars. The craft is now expected to fall to Earth in mid-January.

Last December, Russia lost three navigation satellites when a rocket carrying them failed to reach orbit. A military satellite was lost in February, and the launch of the Express-AM4, described by officials as Russia's most powerful telecommunications satellite, went awry in August.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Retired Spokane Police captain seriously hurt in Costa Rica crash

    Retired Spokane Police captain seriously hurt in Costa Rica crash

    Monday, November 12 2018 10:31 PM EST2018-11-13 03:31:20 GMT
    Holly and Keith Cummings (Photo: GoFundMe)Holly and Keith Cummings (Photo: GoFundMe)

    SPOKANE, Wash. - A retired Spokane Police captain is fighting for his life in the hospital.   Keith Cummings and his wife Holly were on vacation in Costa Rica and got into a head-on crash with another truck on Friday. In an online fundraiser, their daughter, Rachel Durkin, said her mother is recovering in a hotel room with several facial fractures and a pelvic fracture.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - A retired Spokane Police captain is fighting for his life in the hospital.   Keith Cummings and his wife Holly were on vacation in Costa Rica and got into a head-on crash with another truck on Friday. In an online fundraiser, their daughter, Rachel Durkin, said her mother is recovering in a hotel room with several facial fractures and a pelvic fracture.

    >>
  • What you need to know about Initiative 1639's "safe storage" restriction

    What you need to know about Initiative 1639's "safe storage" restriction

    Monday, November 12 2018 8:17 PM EST2018-11-13 01:17:30 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - It's been nearly one week since Washington voters passed Initiative 1639, a sweeping package of stricter gun regulations - particularly for semiautomatic rifles. While the measure raises the minimum age to purchase semiautomatic rifles to 21, creates enhanced background checks, and forces customers to wait 10 days before taking possession of the firearm, I-1639 lays the framework for "safe storage" of semiautomatic rifles

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - It's been nearly one week since Washington voters passed Initiative 1639, a sweeping package of stricter gun regulations - particularly for semiautomatic rifles. While the measure raises the minimum age to purchase semiautomatic rifles to 21, creates enhanced background checks, and forces customers to wait 10 days before taking possession of the firearm, I-1639 lays the framework for "safe storage" of semiautomatic rifles

    >>
  • Spokane Police arrest drunk drive-by shooting suspect

    Spokane Police arrest drunk drive-by shooting suspect

    Tuesday, November 13 2018 10:51 AM EST2018-11-13 15:51:56 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police arrested a 41-year-old man they say fired shots in downtown Spokane while driving drunk.  Officers were called to the area of Sprague and Browne at approximately 9:30 pm Monday for a report of multiple shots fired in the area. The first officers were on scene in less than a minute. A security officer in the area was able to provide a description of the suspect's SUV and a direction of travel. 

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police arrested a 41-year-old man they say fired shots in downtown Spokane while driving drunk.  Officers were called to the area of Sprague and Browne at approximately 9:30 pm Monday for a report of multiple shots fired in the area. The first officers were on scene in less than a minute. A security officer in the area was able to provide a description of the suspect's SUV and a direction of travel. 

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/