Today at 4:29 p.m. CDT three members of the International Space Station (ISS) crew will leave the station and return to earth. Expedition 44 commander Gennady Padalaka, of the Russian Federal Space Agency, and visiting crew members Andres Mogensen of the European Space Agency and Aidyn Aimbetov of the Kazakh Space Agency will undock their Soyuz TMA-16M spacecraft from the orbiting laboratory and land in Kazakhstan a few hours later. At their undocking, Expedition 45 will officially begin under the command of NASA astronaut Scott Kelly. Kelley will command a crew made up of Russian cosmonauts Mikhail Kornienko, Sergey Volkov and Oleg Kononenko along with Kimiya Yui of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency and NASA astronaut Kjell Lindgren. Live Coverage of the crew farewells, undocking and return to earth will begin at 12:45 p.m., on NASA TV. You may watch the coverage by clicking the Youtube link below.
Michael E. Palmer is a writer and photographer based in Alabama.
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