NASA Delegation Arrives at Baikonur Cosmodrome, Russian Space Agency Roscosmos Says
© Sputnik / Sergey MamontovThe launch of the Soyuz-2.1a carrier rocket with the Kanopus-V spacecraft No. 5 and No. 6 from the Vostochny cosmodrome.
© Sputnik / Sergey Mamontov/
MOSCOW (Sputnik) - The Russian state-owned space corporation Roscosmos said on Sunday that a NASA delegation has arrived at the Baikonur Cosmodrome ahead of the first cross-flight in 18 months of a US astronaut on a Russian-made spacecraft.
"A US delegation arrived at Baikonur to participate in the events for the first cross-flight on the Soyuz spacecraft — these are representatives of NASA and relatives of US astronaut Frank Rubio," the statement said.
The delegation was present during the transportation of the Souyz-2.1a launch vehicle to the launch pad.
Rubio, along with Roscosmos cosmonauts Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitry Petelin, is scheduled to launch to the International Space Station (ISS) on September 21 on the Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. He will be a flight engineer and a member of the ISS Expedition 68 station crew.
On July 14, Roscosmos and NASA came to an agreement on so-called cross flights, which made it possible for the only woman in the Russian cosmonaut crew, Anna Kikina, to go to space on board a US spacecraft and for US astronaut Francisco Rubio to go on board Russia's Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft.