Expedition 63 Starts Science, Readies for Cargo and Commercial Crew

NASA astronauts Chris Cassidy and Andrew Morgan
NASA astronauts (from left) Chris Cassidy and Andrew Morgan pose for a portrait inside the Quest airlock. Cassidy is a U.S. Navy SEAL and Captain. Morgan is an emergency physician and Colonel in the U.S. Army. Morgan returned to Earth on April 17.

The three-member Expedition 63 crew is beginning its first full workweek and kicking off science aboard the International Space Station. More space traffic continues this week, as Russia gets ready to launch its next Progress resupply ship late Friday.

NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy is on his third spaceflight and is in command of the orbiting lab. His two crewmates, Roscosmos cosmonauts Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Vagner, will be with Cassidy until October.

Cassidy worked Monday on physics research checking out the Electrostatic Levitation Furnace in the Japanese Kibo laboratory module. The experiment facility heats samples to ultra-high temperatures to observe thermophysical properties difficult to measure in Earth’s gravity.

Ivanishin and Vagner are getting ready for the arrival of a new space shipment due to arrive on Saturday at 1:23 a.m. EDT aboard the Progress 75 (75P) resupply ship. The 75P will launch Friday at 9:51 p.m. and take two orbits around the Earth before automatically docking to the rear port of the Zvezda service module. The duo tested a device on Monday that can remotely maneuver the 75P to a docking if necessary.

The two cosmonauts also collaborated on a variety of Russian space research throughout Monday. The pair looked at microgravity’s effect on pain sensitivity and bone tissue. During the afternoon, they explored how future space travelers may pilot spacecraft on planetary missions.

NASA and SpaceX announced May 27 for the first launch of humans from the United States since 2011. NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Doug Hurley will lift off at 4:23 p.m. from Florida aboard the Crew Dragon spacecraft and test its systems. They will join the Expedition 63 crew a day later after docking to the forward port of the station’s Harmony module.

4 thoughts on “Expedition 63 Starts Science, Readies for Cargo and Commercial Crew”

  1. Hope all is well up there and much sucess for all your endeavours. Please wave when you pass over Acworth, Georgia USA. :):)

  2. Hope all goes smoothly during your stay at ISS. Though I have not watched all the launches over the past year, I have kept track of the many milestones Space X has accomplished over the last few years. I have a bucket list goal to view a launch live which I hope to see in the near future since we will be doing more and more in the days to come. I would like to know when Endeavour will be returning to Earth? Good Luck to all the crew aboard ISS and astronauts of Space X.

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