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Soyuz MS-22: Roscosmos and NASA's final decision to rescue the crew

Updated: Jan 12, 2023

Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft docked at Rassvet module

Soyuz MS-22: the decision of the state commission

On December 15, there was a depressurization of the external contour of the radiator of the thermal control system of the Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft. The version of technical damage to the radiator during manufacture is not confirmed. It has been experimentally proven that damage to the radiator pipeline occurred as a result of a meteoroid impact. The hole diameter is less than 1 mm.

Leak Observed during mid December

Experts concluded: Soyuz MS-22 should descend to Earth without a crew.

Launch of Soyuz MS-23 on February 20, 2023 in unmanned mode.

ERA robotic arm accessed from ISS, to study the impact area of Soyuz MS-22

It was previously planned that Roscosmos cosmonauts Oleg Kononenko and Nikolai Chub and NASA astronaut Loral O'Hara would go to the station on March 16 on this ship.

The expedition of Sergei Prokopiev, Dmitry Petelin and Francisco Rubio to the ISS is being extended. They will return to Earth on Soyuz MS-23.

The life and health of the crew comes first.
The expedition is extended.

Sergey Krikalev, Executive Director for Manned Space Programs of Roscosmos, spoke at a NASA briefing about the situation with the Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft and changes in the ISS flight program.

the flight of Roscosmos cosmonauts Sergei Prokopiev and Dmitry Petelin and NASA astronaut Francisco Rubio has been extended for several months (perhaps until Q2 of 2023);

the unmanned landing of Soyuz MS-22 is planned for March 2023;

the implementation of the ISS Russian Segment flight program shifts to the right, but no tasks are canceled;

repair of the radiator of the Soyuz MS-22 thermal control system is impractical due to the high complexity and labor costs;

there is no need to keep a spare Soyuz at the Baikonur cosmodrome on a permanent basis in readiness for an urgent launch to the ISS, it is much more correct to accelerate the preparation of the next Soyuz according to the plan within 45 days.

Launch Campaign

Pre-flight tests of the Soyuz MS-23 manned spacecraft have begun at Baikonur, 40 days prior to launch.

At the technical complex of site 254 of the Baikonur Cosmodrome, the final stage of ground preparation of the manned transport spacecraft (TPK) Soyuz MS-23 for an automatic flight to the International Space Station (ISS) begins.

Today, the Soyuz MS-23 TPK, which has been in stand-by mode since December 2022, was reopened in the assembly and test building. Specialists of RSC Energia im. S.P. Korolev carried out an external inspection of the ship and control of the initial state of the onboard radio systems, and also performed operations to assemble the circuit of ground test equipment. The work plan for the near future provides for the implementation of complex electrical tests and preparation of the product for tightness tests in a vacuum chamber.

The launch of the Soyuz-2.1a carrier rocket with the Soyuz MS-23 TPK under the program of the 68th long-term expedition to the ISS is planned for February 2023 - RSC Energia

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