Three astronauts return to Earth from ISS on board Soyuz TMA-014M but there was a communications fright

by | Mar 13, 2015 | International Space Station, NASA, Russia, Seradata News | 0 comments

Soyuz TMA-014M successfully undocked from the International Space Station at 1016 GMT on 11 March 2014 with three space travellers aboard: Russian cosmonauts Alexander Samokutyaev and Elena Serova, and NASA astronaut Butch Wilmore.

The space travellers planned return to Earth at first seemed to go smoothly with an engine burn to slow the craft to suborbital speed for re-entry. During the re-entry, at 0029 GMT on 12 March, there was an expected loss of communications.  This was expected because of the interference caused by the hot plasma surrounding the re-entry capsule.  However, this unexpectedly continued right into the later phases of the descent which caused concern as to the health and safety of the crew.  However, just before landing audio communications were re-established at 0052 GMT and the main parachute deployed at 0056 GMT.  The craft made a safe touch down near Dzhezkazgan in Kazakstan at 0114 GMT.

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