Computer Problems Forced Cosmonaut To Fly It In By Hand
The International Space Station's
10th crew arrived Saturday amid a bit of excitement, when a
computer problem forced a last-minute manual docking maneuver.
Soyuz Commander Salizhan Sharipov smoothly guided his craft to a
linkup with the Station's Pirs Docking Compartment at 11:16 p.m.
CDT Friday. Sharipov took over manual control of the Soyuz' flight
part way through the approach when problems were experienced with
an automated docking system.The docking proceeded flawlessly under
Sharipov, Expedition 10 Commander and NASA Science Officer Leroy
Chiao and Russian Space Forces Test Cosmonaut Yuri Shargin launched
from the Baikonur Cosmodrome, Kazakhstan on Thursday. The docking
occurred about 225 statute miles above western Russia.
Expedition 9 Commander Gennady Padalka and Flight Engineer and
NASA Science Officer Mike Fincke watched from the Station,
photographing the Soyuz as it approached. After leak checks,
hatches were opened at 2:13 a.m. CDT, and Padalka and Fincke
greeted their first visitors since April.
The ISS Soyuz 8 craft that has been at the Station since April
will serve as the return vehicle for Padalka, Fincke and Shargin.
Shargin will spend eight days aboard Station conducting science
experiments. Today marked the 180th day in space for Padalka and
Fincke and their 178th on the complex. Padalka and Fincke will hand
over Station operations to Chiao and Sharipov, depart the Station
and land in north central Kazakhstan with Shargin on Oct. 23.
The new Soyuz will be relocated from Pirs to the Zarya module
docking port by Chiao and Sharipov in November.
Watching the activities at the Russian Mission Control Center in
Korolev were NASA Deputy Administrator Fred Gregory, NASA Deputy
Associate Administrator for Space Station and Space Shuttle Michael
Kostelnik, and ISS Program Manager William Gerstenmaier.
Over the next week, Chiao and Sharipov will familiarize
themselves with Station systems and stowed equipment, conduct
robotics training with the Canadarm2 robot arm, and receive
detailed briefings on scientific payloads. Sharipov and Padalka
will perform maintenance work on the oxygen-generating Elektron
system, using spare parts carried aboard the new Soyuz. Chiao and
Fincke are planned to repair the cooling system of a second US