ISS-65 mission


ISS crew:

Commander -
Akihiko Hoshide

Flight engineers:
leg Novitskiy
Petr Dubrov
Mark Vande Hei
Robert Shane Kimbrough
Megan McArthur
Tomas Pesquet



Development of a new rendezvous profile during the flight of the resupply spacecraft Progress MS-17

July 12, 2021

On July 2, 2021, in accordance with the mission plan of the International Space Station (ISS), the resupply spacecraft Progress MS-17 docked with module MRM2 Poisk of the ISS Russian Segment (RS). In the course of carrying out the program of the free flight of the spacecraft, specialists from S.P. Korolev RSC Energia started developmental testing of individual elements of the future one-orbit profile for autonomous rendezvous with the ISS under supervision of the Lead Operations Control Team of the ISS RS Mission Control Center.

Upon completion of powered ascent, the Progress MS-17 resupply spacecraft entered a low reference orbit and started carrying out the standard two-day (33 orbits) program of the flight to the ISS, which is flying in a higher circular orbit. As a result of a series of accelerating burns of the rendezvous and orbital correction thrusters the spacecraft gradually raised its orbit and during the 32nd orbit it switched to the autonomous rendezvous mode in order to carry out the nominal docking with the station. During the short-range guidance phase, Progress MS-17 resupply spacecraft transferred to the so-called coelliptic orbit which is characterized by a constant difference of altitudes with the ISS orbit, where it stayed for about half an orbit until it fired an optimal burn during transfer to the station interception trajectory. This approach is expected to be used in the one-orbit rendezvous profile involving a quasi-coplanar insertion into a parking orbit, which makes it possible for transportation spacecraft to reach the ISS without additional energy consumption in just 90 to 120 minutes after the launch. It is planned to continue developmental testing of elements of the one-orbit profile during subsequent re-supply missions of the Progress MS spacecraft.

Missions of the unmanned resupply spacecraft of the Progress MS series over the period of 2015 to 2020 enabled developmental flight testing of the quick six-hours and the superquick three-hours profiles of rendezvous with the ISS, which subsequently were accepted as the nominal operational mode for the manned Soyuz MS spacecraft as well.



July 21, 2021
LV Proton-M with MLM Nauka is launched
June 30, 2021
LV Soyuz-2.1a with SC Progress MS-17 is launched



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