Russian-American trio head for space station

A Soyuz spacecraft carrying two Russians and a American blasted off on Tuesday for the International Space Station (ISS), where the men are to spend five months in orbit.

The Russian-built Soyuz TMA-06M lifted off on time from the Baikonur launch facility in Kazakhstan, according to an announcer at Russia’s mission control centre in Korolyov, outside Moscow.

The launch had been delayed by eight days because of an equipment problem.

U.S. astronaut Kevin Ford is making his second space voyage, while cosmonauts Oleg Novitsky and Yevgeny Tarelkin are on their first mission.

The trio will join the current ISS crew members, Yuri Malenchenko of Russia, Sunita Williams of the United States and Akihiko Hoshide of Japan, who are to return to Earth on November 12.

KOROLYOV, Russia (Reuters) – (Reporting by Nastassia Astrasheuskaya; Editing by Kevin Liffey)


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