The unmanned cargo freighter vessel Progress M-017M/ISS-49P was launched on a rapid approach trajectory to the International Space Station at 0741 GMT by a Soyuz U from the Baikonur launch base near Tyuratam, Kazakhstan. The rapid approach sequence involves the craft making four burns which allows the craft to rendezvous and dock with the International Space Station within six hours of launch rather than the usual three day approach. Update: Progress M-017M docked with ISS aft port on Zvezda module at 1333 GMT.
The new rapid approach sequence was first used successfully on Progress M-16M. It will be used for the manned Soyuz TMA-08M spacecraft mission in March.