UAE astronaut mission: How 7 residents of the space station are readying food, sleeping bags for AlNeyadi and his mates

Once Crew-6 docks after their 25-hour journey, the ISS will be a little crowded, with a total of 11 residents

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Sahim Salim

Published: Wed 1 Mar 2023, 11:37 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Mar 2023, 12:16 PM

It’s not just people on Earth who are following the developments of the targeted launch of Nasa’s Crew-6 mission to the International Space Station (ISS). The seven current residents of the ISS are counting down to the targeted liftoff of UAE astronaut Sultan AlNeyadi and his Crew-6 mates at 12.34am EST (9.34am UAE time) on Thursday, March 2.

The seven-member Expedition 68 crew – four astronauts and three cosmonauts – on the ISS have been readying the orbiting laboratory for Crew-6’s arrival. Once Crew-6 docks after their 25-hour journey, the ISS will be a little crowded, with 11 residents.

In a blog post, Nasa said flight engineers Nicole Mann (Nasa) and Koichi Wakata (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) spent about an hour readying food and sleeping bags for the visiting crew. “Mann also relocated computers to the cupola to prepare for the upcoming rendezvous and docking monitoring operations. Wakata configured research hardware that will house a new space biology investigation being delivered aboard the Crew Dragon Endeavour.”

The Crew-6 mission was given a ‘Go’ for launch following a launch readiness review, weather briefing, and mission management meeting on February 28.

Nasa astronauts, mission commander Stephen Bowen and pilot Warren Hoburg, along with UAE astronaut AlNeyadi and Roscosmos cosmonaut Andrey Fedyaev, will blast off in SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket from the Kennedy Space Centre in Florida.

The space travellers are targeted to automatically dock to the space-facing port of the Harmony module at 1.17am EST (10.17am UAE time) on Friday.

Zeb Scoville, deputy chief flight director, had earlier highlighted how it will be a “full house” on the ISS with 11 crew members onboard once Crew-6 docks.

Addressing a media briefing last week, he said Expedition 68 crew members are ensuring that sleep compartments are ready for AlNeyadi and his mates. Modules are also being readied to create extra sleeping spaces.


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