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Russia’s new space freighter to leave world’s sole orbiter on July 3

June 21, 18:59 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Before the first space freighter of the new Progress MS series undocks from the ISS, the Russian crew-members will carry out an experiment with it
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©  EPA/ESA/NASA/TIM PEAKE

MOSCOW, June 21. /TASS/. The first space freighter of the new Progress MS series will undock from the International Space Station (ISS) on July 3, a spokesman for Russia’s Flight Control Center told TASS on Tuesday.

"The Progress MS spacecraft will undock from the ISS on July 3. The designated time of undocking is 06:48 a.m. Moscow time [03:48 GMT]," the spokesman said.

The Russian members of the orbital station’s crew will carry out an experiment with the Progress on July 1: they will undock the space freighter from the ISS in a manual mode and then re-dock it, the spokesman said.

"The maneuver will be carried out to check the teleoperated mode of spacecraft control," the spokesman said, adding that the Progress would undock from the Pirs module of the ISS at 08:32 Moscow time (05:32 GMT), according to preliminary data.

The press office of Russia’s Cosmonauts Training Center earlier told TASS that the spacecraft would be brought 200 meters away from the ISS. For some time, it will hover in outer space, after which it will be re-docked.

As the Cosmonauts Training Center said, two crews were trained for the experiment: the crew of Alexei Ovchinin currently working aboard the ISS and the crew of Anatoly Ivanishin, which will leave for the world’s sole orbiter on July 7. They have undergone full training and passed the relevant exam.

The Progress MS, the first spacecraft of the new series of Russian space freighters, has been a part of the ISS since December last year. It docked with the ISS in an automated mode.

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