Latest Updates from Progress M-52 and International Space Station
After two days of continues flight, the Progress M-52 finally docked with ISS (International Space Station). The docking took place at 11:10 p.m. Moscow time (1910 GMT). It had taken off from Russia’s Baikonur launch pad in Kazakhstan on Monday. It carried the supplies for the astronauts on the space station.
Among the 2.3 tons of supplies aboard Progress 17 were 109 kilograms of oxygen and air and 485 kilogram of water. Also included are around 42 oxygen-generating candles that can be used to boost the stationâ€™s air supply and 160 days worth of food to add to the current ISS pantry stores.
The spacecraft also carried 39 kilograms of propellant used to keep the space station in the proper orbit. Ever since the grounding of the Space Shuttle fleet after the Columbia disaster, these kind of unmanned flights have been the only link to the space station.
NASA mission commentator Rob Navias said about the mission: “Everything went by the book, a smooth docking — actually a few minutes ahead of timeâ€. It also carried certain gears like digital cameras to inspect space shuttle Discovery as it approaches the outpost when it launches sometime during the middle of the current year.
ISS is currently housing Commander Leroy Chiao and flight engineer Salizhan Sharipov who are now into their forth month into their planned six-month stay on the station.