ISS-63 mission


ISS crew:

Commander -
Christopher Cassidy
Flight engineers:
Anatoly Ivanishin
Ivan Wagner



Twenty years from the launch of Zvezda Module

July 12, 2020

Twenty years ago, on July 12, 2000, the Proton heavy launch vehicle lifted off from the Baikonur Launch Site. It delivered the Russian Zvezda Service Module (SM) to low Earth orbit. The new module has become the main Russian contribution to the development of the International Space Station (ISS).

The Zvezda module was developed by NPO Energia (now S.P. Korolev RSC Energia) playing the leading part in cooperation with domestic space industry enterprises as a replacement for the Mir Orbital Station. But since 1993, Zvezda SM had already been developed as one of the key elements of the International Space Station project within the frame of implementation of the Russia/US agreement on cooperation in space exploration.

Automatic docking of the Zvezda module with the Zarya Functional Cargo Block (FGB) took place on July 26, 2000. The result is that the current configuration of the ISS for the time being formed an orbital complex consisting of Zvezda SM, Zarya FGB and the Unity interface module. Owning to technical equipment and life support system of the new habitation module, the station had the opportunity to receive crews under the long duration manned flight program. In the early ISS assembly phases Zvezda was to perform the functions of crew life support, power supply, orbit altitude control and an on-board computer center, as well as the main port for Russian Soyuz and Progress manned and cargo spacecraft. Subsequently, many tasks were handed over to other modules, however, up to now Zvezda is remaining a structural and functional center of the ISS Russian Segment.

The ISS operation in a continuous manned mode began on November 2, 2000 with the arrival of the first long-term expedition crew consisting of the ISS-1 Expedition commander William Sheperd, Soyuz TM-31 spacecraft commander Yuri Gidzenko and flight engineer Sergei Krikalev.




October, 2020
The launch of LV Soyuz-2.1a with SC Soyuz MS-17 is planned
July 23, 2020
LV Soyuz-2.1a with SC Progress MS-15 is launched



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