MOSCOW, March 19. /TASS/. The Soyuz MS-17 spacecraft undocked from the International Space Station’s Rassvet module and docked to the Poisk module during the re-docking operation Friday. According to the live stream at the Roscosmos website, the docking took place 5.5 minutes behind schedule.
The spacecraft is piloted by three crew members - Russian cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov, as well as US astronaut Kathleen Rubins. The re-docking proceeded in manual mode.
Earlier, Kud-Sverchkov disclosed that Soyuz MS-17’s re-docking is needed in order to carry out the next spacewalk and free docking point for the Soyuz MS-18, scheduled for launch on April 9.
According to Roscosmos, the Poisk module airlock will be used for the next spacewalk session, while Zvezda service modules’ Transfer Compartment will be used as a reserve airlock. The spacewalk crew will arrive on a spacecraft that will dock to the Rassvet module.
Earlier, Russian cosmonauts carried out spacewalks through the Pirs module, but this module will be decommissioned this year, ahead of the Nauka module launch. Therefore, the cosmonauts will now use the Poisk module airlock, as they did in November 2020.
Currently, the ISS is manned by the two Russian cosmonauts, NASA astronauts Kathleen Rubins, Michael Hopkins, Viktor Glover, Shannon Walker and Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency astronaut Soichi Noguchi. The Soyuz MS-18 spacecraft is supposed to deliver Russian astronauts Oleg Novitsky and Pyotr Dubrov, as well as NASA astronaut Mark Vande Hei.