Russian Soyuz rocket blasts off with 3 bound for the International Space Station | Space

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Two days after a rare last-second launch abort, a Russian Soyuz spacecraft blasted off Saturday on a flight to the International Space Station, carrying two short-duration crew members and a NASA astronaut bound for a six-month tour of duty.

Soyuz MS-25/71S commander Oleg Novitskiy, Belarus guest cosmonaut Marina Vasilevskaya and NASA veteran Tracy Dyson thundered away from the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 8:36 a.m. EDT (5:36 p.m. local time) and slipped into orbit eight minutes and 45 seconds later.

Credit NASA/Bill Ingalls.

Launch originally was planned for last Thursday, but the countdown was aborted inside 20 seconds to launch when computers detected low voltage readings in the Soyuz 2.1a rocket’s first stage electrical system.

It was the first ever such abort for a Soyuz rocket, and it took Russian engineers a day to review telemetry, pinpoint the problem and replace suspect batteries. Subsequent testing showed all systems were go for a second launch attempt Saturday.

As the Soyuz countdown ticked toward a late afternoon launch in Kazakhstan, a SpaceX Dragon cargo ship launched Thursday from the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station caught up with the space station and moved in for docking at 7:19 a.m. local time, bringing 6,200 pounds of science gear, spare parts and crew supplies to the lab complex, including fresh food and coffee kits.

The Soyuz is expected to catch up with the space station Monday, moving in for docking at a port on the station’s Earth-facing Prichal module at 11:09 a.m. local time.

The Soyuz MS-25/71S crew – commander Oleg Novitskiy (bottom), NASA astronaut Tracy Dyson (middle) and…

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