about the Soyuz TM-32 transport vehicle launch

April 28, 2001. Baikonur cosmodrome

At 11 hours 37 minutes 20 seconds Moscow Summer Time the Russian Soyuz TM-32 manned transport vehicle was launched by the Souyz-U launch vehicle from Baikonur cosmodrome in support of the subsequent activities aimed at implementation of the International Space Station (ISS) ambitious project.
The launch objective is to provide the scheduled change of the Soyuz TM-31, which has been operating since November 2, 2000 as part of the International Space station (ISS) and performs the services of assured crew return vehicle staying permanently attached to the Complex when prime crew is engaged in its activities aboard the ISS. In addition, it is foreseen to conduct the activities aboard the Orbital Complex under the Visiting Program and accomplish the tasks of flight engineering for ISS-2 crew.
Under the ISS deployment program the flight is designated by 2S.
The space vehicle is injected into a calculated near-earth orbit with inclination of 51,63, minimum and maximum flight altitudes of 192,8 and 247,0 km, respectively. In so doing, an orbital period is 88,60 min.
There is a three-man crew of the first russian visiting expedition (VE-1) aboard the space vehicle: the Russian cosmonauts Talgat Musabayev (Crew Commander), Yuri Baturin (Flight Engineer) and the US citizen Dennis Tito, who got pre-flight space training in the Russian Cosmonauts Training Center after Yu.A. Gagarin, and will visit the ISS Orbital Complex as a space tourist.
The space vehicle docking is scheduled to occur on April 30, 2001, while coming in contact with a free docking port of the Zarya Module of the ISS Orbital Complex will be at 12:07 Moscow Time.
During implementation of the program the VE-1 crew will get the Soyuz TM-31 vehicle ready for its undocking from the station, perform autonomous flight and deorbiting. In particular, the visiting crew will carry its personal couches from the Soyuz TM-32 descent vehicle into it. During its return to Earth the crew members will occupy the coaches. Landing of the Soyuz TM-31 descent vehicle is slated for May 6, 2001.
The Soyuz TM-32 vehicle prelaunch processing and launch at Baikonur cosmodrome were performed under the direction of the Technical Director of the Russian Manned Programs, General Designer of RSC Energia after S.P. Korolev, the academician of the Russian Academy of Sciences Yu.P. Semenov. The Soyuz TM-32 vehicle flight is commanded by the Lead Operational Control Team (LOCT) housed in the Moscow Mission Control Center (Korolev) and operating in a close cooperation with the specialists of the American Mission Center based in Houston. The LOCT involves the managers and leading specialists from RSC Energia after S.P. Korolev, experts from other enterprises and entities. Flight Director is Pilot-Cosmonaut V.A. Solovyov.





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