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Trio of Russian, Japanese Space Station Visitors Safely Back on Earth

At center, Soyuz Commander Alexander Misurkin and spaceflight participants Yusaku Maezawa (left) and Yozo Hirano (right) pose for individual preflight portraits.

Russian cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin along with spaceflight participants Yusaku Maezawa and Yozo Hirano landed on Earth around 10:13 p.m. EST Sunday, December 19, 2021, in Kazakhstan (around 9:13 a.m. Monday, December 20, Kazakhstan time). The trio departed the International Space Station in their Soyuz MS-20 spacecraft at 6:50 p.m.

Soyuz MS-20 Crew Ship

The Soyuz MS-20 crew ship with cosmoanut Alexander Misurkin and spaceflight participants Yozo Hirano and Yusaku Maezawa backs away from the station. Credit: NASA

Misurkin, now a three-time space visitor, commanded the Soyuz MS-20 spacecraft, which launched the visitors to the space station from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on December 8.

Alexander Misurkin, Yusaku Maezawa and Yozo Hirano

Cosmonaut Alexander Misurkin and spaceflight participants Yusaku Maezawa and Yozo Hirano are pictured aboard the station on December 8, 2021. Credit: NASA TV

The Soyuz spacecraft undocked from the International Space Station at 6:50 p.m. EST, carrying three people back to Earth. Remaining aboard the orbiting outpost are Expedition 66 commander and Roscosmos cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov, Roscosmos cosmonaut Pyotr Dubrov, NASAEstablished in 1958, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is an independent agency of the United States Federal Government that succeeded the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA). It is responsible for the civilian space program, as well as aeronautics and aerospace research. It’s vision is “To discover and expand knowledge for the benefit of humanity.””>NASA astronauts Mark Vande Hei, Raja Chari, Thomas Marshburn, and Kayla Barron, and ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Matthias Maurer.

Earlier this month, the International Space Station surpassed its 21-year milestone of continuous human presence, providing opportunities for unique research and technological demonstrations that help prepare for long-duration missions to the Moon and MarsMars is the second smallest planet in our solar system and the fourth planet from the sun. Iron oxide is prevalent in Mars’ surface resulting in its reddish color and its nickname “The Red Planet.” Mars’ name comes from the Roman god of war.”>Mars and also improve life on Earth. During that time, 251 people from 19 countries have visited the orbiting laboratory, which has hosted nearly 3,000 research investigations from researchers in 108 countries and areas.

Source: SciTechDaily