3 spaceflyers arrive at the ISS aboard Russian Soyuz spacecraft

a white cone-shaped capsule can be seen head-on with earth behind it
The Soyuz MS-25 spacecraft approaches the International Space Station for docking on March 25, 2024. (Image credit: NASA TV)

Three spaceflyers have arrived at the International Space Station (ISS) after a roughly two-day orbital chase.

Russia's Soyuz MS-25 spacecraft docked with the ISS today (March 21) at 11:03 a.m. EDT (1503 GMT), about 50 hours after launching from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

Flying on the Soyuz are NASA astronaut Tracy C. Dyson, Oleg Novitskiy of the Russian space agency Roscosmos and Marina Vasilevskaya, a spaceflight participant from Belarus. 

The hatches between the Soyuz and the ISS are expected to open around 1:40 p.m. EDT (1740 GMT) today. You can watch that event, along with a welcome ceremony hosted by the orbiting lab's current residents, live here at Space.com, courtesy of NASA TV. Coverage will begin at 1:15 p.m. EDT (1715 GMT).

Related: International Space Station — Everything you need to know

NASA astronaut Tracy C. Dyson (left), Roscosmos cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy (center), and spaceflight participant Marina Vasilevskaya (right) of Belarus pose for a portrait at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center on Nov. 2, 2023. (Image credit: GCTC/Andrey Shelepin)

This is the fourth spaceflight for Novitskiy, the third for Dyson and the first for Vasilevskaya. 

Dyson will stay in orbit for about six months, serving as a flight engineer for ISS' Expeditions 70 and 71. Novitskiy and Vasilevskaya, however, will live on the station for just 12 days or so; they'll come home in early April aboard a different Soyuz, along with NASA's Loral O'Hara.

O'Hara arrived at the station last September, aboard a Soyuz that also carried cosmonauts Oleg Kononenko and Nikolai Chub. Kononenko and Chub are about halfway through their planned yearlong orbital stay; they'll come back to Earth in September with Dyson.

Kononenko, Chub and O'Hara aren't the only astronauts who will welcome the Soyuz MS-25 trio aboard the ISS today. 

There are four other astronauts on the orbiting lab as well, who arrived earlier this month on SpaceX's Crew-8 mission for NASA. Those four, who will stay up for about six months, are NASA's Matthew Dominick, Michael Barratt and Jeanette Epps, and Alexander Grebenkin of Roscosmos.

Soyuz MS-25 was originally supposed to launch on Thursday morning (March 21) and arrive at the ISS that same day. But an electrical issue with its rocket ride forced an abort that day, and a launch delay to Saturday.

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Mike Wall
Senior Space Writer

Michael Wall is a Senior Space Writer with Space.com and joined the team in 2010. He primarily covers exoplanets, spaceflight and military space, but has been known to dabble in the space art beat. His book about the search for alien life, "Out There," was published on Nov. 13, 2018. Before becoming a science writer, Michael worked as a herpetologist and wildlife biologist. He has a Ph.D. in evolutionary biology from the University of Sydney, Australia, a bachelor's degree from the University of Arizona, and a graduate certificate in science writing from the University of California, Santa Cruz. To find out what his latest project is, you can follow Michael on Twitter.

  • Jim.Fitz-Gerald
    Admin said:
    A Russian Soyuz spacecraft delivered three spaceflyers, including one NASA astronaut, to the International Space Station today (March 23).

    3 spaceflyers arrive at the ISS aboard Russian Soyuz spacecraft : Read more
    That is a long time to be holding bladders and bowels. Do they have a toilet on the Soyuz craft?