American, Russian cheered as they reach Intl Space Station

Posted April 21, 2017

The strength on the ISS is five as the two new crew members joined the three astronauts already living in the orbiting lab and became part of Expedition 51 crewmates.

Roscosmos also unveiled the emblem for expedition 51, which Yurchikhin said was inspired by the US' second moon mission, Apollo-12.

Fischer and Yurchikhin reached the $100 billion space station, which orbits about 250 miles (400 km) above Earth on schedule at 9:18 a.m. EDT (1318 GMT).

He later attended Air Force Test Pilot School at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., and eventually helped put the F-22 Raptor through its paces.

USA astronaut Jack Fischer and Russian cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin.

Yurchikhin and Ryazanskiy plan to stage a Russian spacewalk in August before the Soyuz MS-04 crew returns to Earth Sept. 3. "Fyodor told me I should be doing that", he said.

Fischer and Yurchikhin were the first to receive permission from Roscosmos to name their Soyuz - "Argo".

Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi speaks during a joint press conference with Federica Mogherini High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy at the Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing Wednesday
Air Force Academy Grad Bound For International Space Station

On the Apollo 12 patch, the final clipper ship was depicted rounding the moon, above where Bean and Pete Conrad, the mission's commander, were to land their lunar module, "Intrepid". They'll be aboard the station for four and a half months.

This was the ISS's first long-term crew: American astronaut William Shepherd (center) and his two Russian fellow workers, cosmonauts Yuri Gidzenko (left) and Sergei Krikalev (right).

"Our unofficial logo honors the Apollo-Soyuz mission, and the handshake in space in 1975", said Fischer in a press conference on Wednesday (April 19). She is the first female commander of the space station and NASA's most experienced astronaut.

"The Apollo-Soyuz flight was a significant milestone in the relationship of the two countries", said Yurchikhin. Another new investigation bound for the U.S. National Laboratory will look at using magnetized cells and tools to make it easier to handle cells and cultures, and improve the reproducibility of experiments.

On Saturday, NASA will livestream video of the Orbital ATK Cygnus cargo spacecraft rendezvous and capture at the International Space Station.

"It has a saying on it, "ОДНА КОМАНДА" - "One Team" - 'Exploring Together, '" described Fischer.

Yurchikhin, 58, has racked up 537 days in space over the course of four missions to the ISS, more than any United States astronaut but some way short of the 879 days logged by record-holding compatriot Gennady Padalka.

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