about the launch of transport cargo vehicle Progress M-56
to the International Space Station


April 24, 2006. Baikonur Cosmodrome.

According to the Russian Party liabilities under the International Space Station project the Progress M-56 transport cargo vehicle was launched from Baikonur launch site at 20:03:25 Moscow time.
Technical management of the rocket-space complex processing and launch was chaired by N.N. Sevastiyanov, President of RSC Energia, General Director for manned space complexes and Technical Manager for flight tests.
Progress M-56 processing was conducted under technical management of N.I. Zelenschikov, First Vice-President of RSC Energia, First Deputy General Designer, at Baikonur launch site.
The decision about the Progress M-56 launch was taken by the Government Board (co-chairmen: N.F. Moiseev, Deputy Director of Roscosmos, and V.A. Grin’, Deputy General Director of Machine-building TSNII) based on the statement of the Technical Management about the readiness of the launch vehicle and Progress-56  Complex and ground infrastructure involved in the ISS program.
The launch is aimed at delivering necessary cargoes to the International Space Station (ISS) to continue its manned operation, support living and working conditions for the crew, re-supply the propulsion system tanks with propellants.
The vehicle was injected into a near-earth orbit with the following parameters: maximum altitude of 237.7 km, minimum altitude of 193.6 km, orbital period of 88.53 min, and inclination of 51.64°.
All vehicle onboard systems operate normally.
Progress M-56 carries about 2.6 tones of various cargoes, including scientific hardware and equipment to perform onboard activities under the foreign partners’ programs.
The vehicle berthing is scheduled on 26 April 2006 at 21:40 to the axial docking port of the ISS Russian Service Module Zvezda, from which the manned vehicle Soyuz TMA-7 was undocked. On April 9, 2006 Soyuz TMA-7 returned the ISS-12 Crew and space flight participant, Brazilian citizen Marcos Pontes to the Earth.
During the launch the following representatives were at Baikonur Cosmodrome: representatives of the Federal Space Agency, NASA, of S.P.Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia, subcontractors and branch organizations, which participated in vehicle  manufacture, processing and launch.
The vehicle and ISS Russian Segment flight is under control of the Lead Operational Control Team (LOCT) working in the Mission Control Center in Moscow (MCC-M), (Flight Director is V.A. Soloviev, Vice-President of S.P. Korolev RSC Energia, Deputy General Designer, pilot-cosmonaut).
The ISS orbital complex  operates in orbit with the following parameters: maximum altitude of 365.5 km, minimum altitude of 337.8 km, orbital period of 91.34 min, and inclination of 51.66°.
Based on the telemetry information and reports made by the ISS Expedition 13 crew: Russian cosmonaut Pavel Vinogradov (ISS-13 commander, test cosmonaut RSC Energia) and American astronaut Jeffry Williams (ISS-13 flight engineer, NASA), all station onboard systems operate as designed.
The Orbital Complex is ready for docking with the cargo vehicle.

For reference: Progress M-56 flight is the 21th flight of cargo vehicles launched to the ISS under the commitments previously taken by Russia in this International Project. This flight is the 110th flight beginning from the operation of Progress vehicles (1978) developed and manufactured by RSC Energia in cooperation with space industry companies.






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