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A new Russian Progress cargo ship is chasing the International Space Station on a superfast delivery mission today (April 4) after a flawless liftoff atop its Soyuz rocket.
The Soyuz launched the uncrewed supply ship Progress 72 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 7:01 a.m. EST (1101 GMT) to deliver more than 3.5 tons supplies to astronauts on the station. Progress 72 is flying on a swift, two-orbit trajectory that should bring it to the station at 10:25 a.m. EDT (1425 GMT), just under 3.5 hours after liftoff. You can watch the docking live here, beginning at 9:45 a.m. EDT (1345 GMT).
Launch - Time - NASA - Spokesperson - Rob
"This was a perfect launch, right on time," NASA spokesperson Rob Navias said during live commentary. "A flawless ascent."
A Russian Soyuz rocket carrying the uncrewed Progress 72 cargo ship launches toward the International Space Station on April 4, 2019 from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
Time - Russia - Roscosmos - Space - Agency
It's only the second time Russia's Roscosmos space agency has attempted the ultrafast delivery. Progress (and crewed Soyuz trips) used to take two days to reach the station, with Roscosmos cutting that transit time to six hours with a four-orbit trajectory.
In July 2018, Roscosmos successfully performed the first two-orbit rendezvous with the launch of Progress 70.
Progress - Tons - Supplies - Expedition - Astronauts
Progress 72 is packed with about 3.7 tons of supplies for the six Expedition 59 astronauts living on the International Space Station. That cargo includes 104 lbs. (47 kilograms) of oxygen and air; 926 lbs. (420 kg) of water; 3,117 lbs. (1,413 kg) of spare parts and other gear; and 3,375 lbs. (1,530 kg) of propellant. Among the dry cargo on Progress 72 are components to be used during a planned spacewalk by Expedition 59 astronauts...
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