Soyuz TMA-20 to Launch December 15, 2010

Russian cosmonaut Dmitri Kondratyev (center), Expedition 26 flight engineer and Expedition 27 commander; along with NASA astronaut Catherine Coleman and European Space Agency (ESA) astronaut Paolo Nespoli, both Expedition 26/27 flight engineers are scheduled to launch to the International Space Station aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft in December 15, 2010 aboard the Soyuz TMA-20 from the Baikonur cosmodrome.

With the launch of the Soyuz TMA-20, the International Space Station will enter into a busy traffic period. The STS-133 Space Shuttle Endeavor is tentatively scheduled for a December 17, 2010 lift-off from the Kennedy Space Center which is slated to return prior to the end of the year. The commercial Dragon spacecraft of SpaceX is to fly close to the ISS next month as well.

On January 20, 2011, the Japanese HTV-2 cargo spaceship will launch from Japan for the ISS followed by a Russian Progress 41 cargo spaceship on January 28, 2010. On February 15, 2010 the European ATV-2 cargo spaceship will launch from the French Guiana spaceport. STS-134 Endeavour is now scheduled for a February 27, 2011 departure from Florida bound to the ISS.


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