ROME, December 17. /TASS/. The ISS crew commander must be ready for any challenges and bear the responsibility for the safety of the crew in an emergency, Samantha Cristoforetti, a European Space Agency astronaut that will lead a mission to the space outpost, said in an interview with TASS on Tuesday.
"Compared to the previous flight, when I did not have the responsibilities of a commander, this time I need to have a broader view of the situation," she said. "I must be even more focused and ready for any challenges that could face me, my colleagues on the ISS and the team on Earth in order to resolve any problem before it can become a security threat or an obstacle to our work."
The challenges could be organizational, personal or associated with relationships, being worn out or communication problems, she said.
"Challenges of a purely technical nature arise rarely because we are well trained in this sense and have all the necessary resources to carry out our assignments," she said.
If an emergency erupts onboard, she as the commander would be in charge of the procedures to ensure crew safety and saving the space outpost, she said.
Earlier, Russian Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov said that Cristoforetti was undergoing training at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center. Before the flight, all astronauts study the Russian segment of the station, while the Russian cosmonauts study the US segment.
The launch of the mission, also consisting of NASA astronauts Kjell Lindgren, Bob Hines and Jessica Watkins, aboard SpaceX's Crew Dragon is scheduled for the spring of 2022 from Cape Canaveral in Florida. Cristoforetti is the first European female astronaut to lead a mission to the ISS. This flight will be her second.