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“The hatches were opened at 08:00 a.m. Moscow time (0500 GMT). The Soyuz crew entered the ISS,” a spokesman for the center, located outside Moscow, told TASS.
The new crew consists of Russian Federal Space Agency Roscosmos cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov, American Terry Virts and European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti.Expedition 42 Commander Barry “Butch” Wilmore of NASA and Alexander Samoukutyaev and Yelena Serova, both of Russian space agency Roscosmos, welcomed the new crew members.
The crew will spend 169 days on board the station during which it is due to carry out an extensive program of over 100 scientific and applied researches and experiments and work with Russian cargo ships and Europe's ATV-5 cargo spacecraft. No spacewalks are planned.
Out of the new crew, only Cristoforetti has no experience of spaceflights. Shkaplerov and Virts have previously made one flight each. But the American had only flown on board the space shuttle Endeavour.