Crew From U.S., Russia and Japan Expands Space Population to Six

The newly-expanded Expedition 54 crew
The newly-expanded Expedition 54 crew gathers in the Zvezda service module for ceremonila congratulations from family and mission officials. Credit: NASA TV

NASA’s Scott Tingle, Anton Shkaplerov of the Russian space agency Roscosmos, and Norishige Kanai of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency joined Expedition 54 Commander Alexander Misurkin of Roscosmos and crewmates Mark Vande Hei and Joe Acaba of NASA aboard the International Space Station when the hatches between the Soyuz spacecraft and the orbiting laboratory officially opened at 5:55 a.m. EST. The welcoming ceremony will begin shortly.

The crew members will spend about six months conducting approximately 250 science investigations in fields such as biology, Earth science, human research, physical sciences and technology development — research that impacts life on Earth.

Vande Hei, Acaba and Misurkin are scheduled to remain aboard the station until February 2018, and Tingle, Shkaplerov and Kanai are scheduled to return to Earth next June.

This crew continues the long-term increase in crew size on the U.S. segment from three to four, allowing NASA to maximize time dedicated to research in the unique microgravity environment. Highlights of upcoming investigations include demonstrating the benefits of manufacturing fiber optic filaments in a microgravity environment, a new study looking at structures that are vital to the design of advanced optical materials and electronic devices and examining a drug compound and drug delivery system designed to combat muscular breakdown in space or during other prolonged periods of disuse, such as extended bed rest on Earth.

For live coverage and more information about the mission, visit: Get breaking news, images and features from the station on Instagram at: @iss, on Facebook, and on Twitter @Space_Station and @ISS_Research. Follow Twitter updates from NASA astronauts Joe Acaba, Mark Vande Hei, and Scott Tingle as well as from Anton Shkaplerov and Norishige Kanai.

8 thoughts on “Crew From U.S., Russia and Japan Expands Space Population to Six”

  1. It’s just amazing how these astronauts spend quite a lot of time in their experiments and researches that would give a huge impact on earth’s life and developing earth’s development of technology as well. I’m just amazed <3

  2. Wow;; this awesome to see ISS live and adding of new crew members from different countries that show that world is United.thank you for this situation in our earth.

  3. I really love this. My dream is to be an earth science(Geologist) specialist, sacrificing my entire life carrying out research that will create a huge positive impact on earth’s life. I hope one day, God will create an opportunity for me to work together with you guys. Love you all.

  4. Shout out to Scott Tingle from your daughter’s coworkers in NYC! She amazes us everyday and she’s incredibly proud of you. Thanks for your service!

  5. It is so exciting and great that russian cosmonauts are working shoulder to shoulder with american astronauts and also with astrounats from all over the world. I guess it is very important.

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