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STELLAR CITY /Moscow Region/, February 24. /TASS/. Comprehensive examination training for the main and back-up crews of the next expedition to the International Space Station (ISS) has started at the Cosmonaut Training Center outside Moscow, the center’s spokesman said on Wednesday.
"On February 24, the main crew is working on the simulator of the Russian segment of the ISS while the back-up crew is working on the simulator of the Soyuz TMA-M manned transport spacecraft. On February 25, the crews will change places," the center’s spokesman said.
During the examinations, the cosmonauts will have to manage a number of emergency situations. As Deputy Head of the Cosmonaut Training Center Valery Korzun said, examination papers include situations that are most frequently encountered in flight and pose the most serious danger for crews.
According to him, no situation emerged during the exams when the crew notionally died.
At the same time, "this sometimes happens" during working training sessions, he added.
The expedition 47/48 to the world’s sole orbiter aboard the Soyuz TMA-20M spacecraft is scheduled to start on March 19.
The new expedition’s basic crew comprises Russian cosmonauts Alexey Ovchinin and Oleg Skripochka and also American astronaut Jeffrey Williams Their back-up members are Sergei Ryzhikov and Andrei Borisenko from Russia, and also Robert Kimbrough from the United States. The flight will be the first for Ovchinin in his career and the second for Skripochka while Williams will perform already his fourth flight.