MOSCOW, April 23 (Itar-Tass) —— The ISS crewmen opened the hatches between the International Space Station (ISS) and the freighter Progress M-15M, which docked successfully to the ISS in the automatic mode on Sunday, a source in the Mission Control Centre in the Moscow Region told Itar-Tass on Sunday.
The Progress hatches cannot be opened immediately, at first several compulsory actions should be taken to bring the ISS and the Progress freighter closer.
The spacemen are seeking immediately to take their gifts from home, parcels from relatives and friends and to take the so-called urgent cargoes. The spacemen primarily bring a special thermostat of the pack with biomaterial for the experiments Bioemulsion, BIF, Aril and Poligen on Sunday.
Before going to bed Russian crewmen will take air samples and mothball the freighter. The light-out hour is scheduled at three hours Moscow time on Monday that is 90 minutes later than usual.
The crew will bring the cargoes from the Progress freighter gradually for several months. “Even in the zero gravity it is a very hard and long work,” the source said.
The Progress freighter is carrying about 2,400 tonnes of cargoes, namely foodstuffs, water and fuel supplies, equipment, and the gifts for the ISS-30 crew Russian cosmonauts Anton Shkaplerov, Anatoly Ivanishin, Oleg Konopenko, US astronauts Daniel Burbank, Donald Pettit and Dutch astronaut Andre Kuipers.
The Russian cargo spaceship Progress M-15M, which is the second one this year, was launched from the Baikonur spaceport on April 20 and docked at 18:39 Moscow time the Pirs docking module on Sunday.