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17 September 2012

International Space Station Status Report

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Expedition 32 Crew

Expedition 32 Lands Safely in Kazakhstan.
 
The Soyuz TMA-04M carrying Commander Gennady Padalka and Flight Engineers Joe Acaba and Sergei Revin landed safely in Kazakhstan at 10:53 p.m. EDT Sept. 17 (8:53 a.m. Kazakhstan time Sept. 17). Expedition 32 officially ended when the trio undocked at 7:09 p.m. from the Poisk module. They began their mission when they arrived at the International Space Station May 17 for a total of 123 days on the orbital laboratory.

The Soyuz carrying the homebound trio fired its orbital engines for the last time at 9:56 p.m. The spacecraft then separated and the descent module entered the atmosphere, deployed its parachutes then fired its landing engines just a few feet above the ground softening its landing.

Expedition 33 is now underway as Commander Suni Williams and Flight Engineers Aki Hoshide and Yuri Malenchenko continue their stay until Nov. 12. The station’s newest trio began their mission when they docked their Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft to the Rassvet module on July 17.

Padalka ceremonially handed the controls of the station over to Williams on Saturday afternoon. He previously commanded two International Space Station missions including Expeditions 9 and 19. His first spaceflight was aboard the Russian Mir space station in 1998 bringing his total spaceflight experience to 711 days.

Williams is serving her second mission in space her first being Expedition 14 as flight engineer. She has conducted six spacewalks, four during Expedition 14 and two on Expedition 32, for a total of 44 hours and two minutes.

A new crew is set to join Expedition 33 when Flight Engineers Kevin Ford, Oleg Novitskiy and Evgeny Tarelkin launch in October aboard the Soyuz TMA-06M spacecraft. Ford will command Expedition 34 when Williams, Hoshide and Malenchenko complete their mission.

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