A Proton-M booster rocket carrying the Nauka module lifted off as scheduled at 7:58 pm native time (14:58 GMT) from the Russian area launch facility in Baikonur, Kazakhstan. The navigational antennas and photo voltaic arrays deployed correctly after a flawless launch that set the module on an eight-day journey to the orbiting outpost.
After a collection of manoeuvres, the 20-metric-ton (22-ton) module is ready to dock on the Worldwide House Station in automated mode on July 29.
The launch of Nauka, additionally known as the Multipurpose Laboratory Module, had been repeatedly delayed due to technical issues. It was initially scheduled to go up in 2007.
In 2013, specialists discovered contamination in its gasoline system, leading to a protracted and dear alternative. Different Nauka methods additionally underwent modernization or repairs.
A launch beforehand set for July 15 was postponed till Wednesday because of the want to repair unspecified flaws.
Earlier than Nauka docks on the station, one of many older Russian modules, the Pirs spacewalking compartment, will must be eliminated and scrapped to release room for the brand new module. Russian area controllers plan to carry out the manoeuvre Friday after they test and make sure that Nauka’s methods function correctly and the module is prepared for docking.
Russia is anticipated to dock its first humanoid robotic to area
Russian crewmembers on the station have carried out two spacewalks to attach cables in preparation for Nauka’s arrival. As soon as Nauka docks on the station, it’s going to require a protracted collection of manoeuvres, together with as much as 11 spacewalks starting in early September, to organize it for operation.
The Worldwide House Station is at the moment operated by NASA astronauts Mark Vande Hei, Shane Kimbrough and Megan McArthur; Oleg Novitsky and Pyotr Dubrov of Russia’s Roscosmos area company; Japan Aerospace Exploration Company astronaut Akihiko Hoshide and European House Company astronaut Thomas Pesquet.
In 1998, Russia launched the station’s first module, Zarya, which was adopted in 2000 by one other massive module, Zvezda, and three smaller modules within the following years. The final of them, Rassvet, arrived on the station in 2010.
© 2021 The Canadian Press