Progress 87 Rolls onto the International Space Station as a Cargo Ship

Progress 87 Rolls onto the International Space Station as a Cargo Ship

About three tons of supplies were delivered to the International Space Station early on Saturday morning (February 17) by Russia’s robotic Progress 87 cargo ship.

On Wednesday night, February 14, Progress 87 took out toward the orbiting laboratory atop a Soyuz rocket from the Russian-operated Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

On Saturday at 1:06 a.m. EST (0606 GMT), the cargo approached the International Space Station (ISS) as the two spacecraft flew approximately 260 miles (418 kilometers) above the South Pacific.

As anticipated, the Progress vehicle, which is transporting roughly three tons of food, fuel, and other supplies, docked on its own. On Saturday morning, however, NASA officials posted a blog entry explaining that cosmonauts Oleg Kononenko and Nikolai Chub were keeping an eye on the situation from within the International Space Station (ISS) and were ready to take action if necessary.

“Kononenko and Chub spent Friday preparing for the upcoming cargo delivery by reviewing telerobotically operated rendezvous unit (TORU) procedures, which allows them to remotely control an arriving spacecraft in the unlikely event it could not automatically dock,” agency officials wrote in the post.

Along with Chub, Kononenko just broke the record for the longest duration spent in orbit. The other five individuals residing on the station are NASA astronauts Loral O’Hara and Jasmin Moghbeli, Japanese astronaut Satoshi Furukawa, cosmonaut Konstantin Borisov, and Andreas Mogensen from the European orbit Agency.

On SpaceX’s Crew-7 mission, Borisov, Furukawa, Mogensen, and Moghbeli arrived at the ISS last August. The four astronauts of Crew-8, whose launch is not expected to occur before March 1, will shortly return to Earth and take their place on the orbiting lab.

Sanchita Patil

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