ESA astronaut Roberto Vittori arrives at the International Space Station

Apr 17, 2005

The Soyuz TMA-6 spacecraft carrying European Space Agency astronaut Roberto Vittori on the ENEIDE mission and the two members of the ISS Expedition 11 crew docked with the International Space Station (ISS) today at the Russian docking compartment Pirs at [04:20] Central European summer time (CEST). Following the scheduled post-docking checks, the hatch between the spacecraft and the ISS was opened at [07:12] CEST.

Vittori is the first European astronaut to fly to the ISS for a second time, having made his first flight on the Marco Polo mission in 2002. During his 8-day stay on the ISS, he will carry out an extensive experiment programme in the fields of human physiology, biology, technology and education. One of his first tasks will be to transfer experiment equipment and samples from Soyuz TMA-6 to the ISS. Other experiment equipment for the mission was transported to the ISS on the unmanned Progress M-52 supply ship, launched on 28 February.

The ENEIDE mission is being co-sponsored by the Italian Ministry of Defence and the region of Lazio in the framework of an agreement between ESA and the Russian federal space agency, Roscosmos. Many of the experiments were developed by Italian researchers and built by Italian industry and research institutions. In addition to the experimental programme of the ENEIDE mission, time has been set aside for Vittori to take part in communication activities and emergency ISS training on his first day on the station.

His programme of scientific experiments, technology demonstrations and educational activities will continue throughout the mission, which concludes when he returns with the ISS Expedition 10 crew, Leroy Chiao and Salizhan Sharipov, with a scheduled landing in Kazakhstan at midnight (Central European Time) on 24/25 April. They will return in Soyuz TMA-5, which has been stationed at the ISS with the Expedition 10 crew for the past six months, serving as an emergency lifeboat. Vittori will play an important role in the reentry, descent and landing on the return flight in Soyuz TMA-5, which flew the Expedition 10 crew to the ISS last October. Soyuz TMA-6 will remain docked with the ISS for the next six months, becoming the lifeboat for the ISS Expedition 11 crew.


Explore further: Suddenly, the sun is eerily quiet: Where did the sunspots go?

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Last European space truck set for July 24 launch

Jun 26, 2014

The last of five robot resupply ships Europe was scheduled to provide for the International Space Station will be taken aloft on July 24, launch firm Arianespace said on Thursday.

Tour of Boeing's CST-100 Spaceliner to LEO

Jun 13, 2014

On Monday, June 9, Boeing revealed the design of their CST-100 astronaut spaceliner aimed at restoring Americas ability to launch our astronauts to low-Earth orbit (LEO) and the International Space Station ...

Recommended for you

Wake up, robot

1 hour ago

Code, play and command your space droid – students across Europe can bring a squadron of minisatellites to life on the International Space Station as the ultimate space robot game.

Transiting exoplanet with longest known year

18 hours ago

Astronomers have discovered a transiting exoplanet with the longest known year. Kepler-421b circles its star once every 704 days. In comparison, Mars orbits our Sun once every 780 days. Most of the 1,800-plus ...

Image: Messy peaks of Zucchius

23 hours ago

Even to the naked eye, our Moon looks heavily cratered. The snippet of carved and pitted lunar surface shown in this image lies within a 66 km-wide crater known as Zucchius. From our perspective, Zucchius ...

User comments : 0