ISS Gets New Crew

The Soyuz TMA-19 spacecraft with two American astronauts and a Russian cosmonaut aboard docked with the space station yesterday at 6:21pm EDT, doubling the size of the crew. Cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin on arrival said, "We had a great launch and a great docking".

 The new crew poses shortly after arrival

The arrival of the new crew marks the first time that two female astronauts have served together on a long duration mission, an event that coincided with two other milestones for women, launching on June 16th, the 47th anniversary of the launch of the first woman in space, cosmonaut Valentina Tereshkova, and today the 27th anniversary of the first launch of an American woman into space, astronaut Sally Ride in 1983. 2010 has been a landmark year for women in space, with the most number in space at one time being set in April, when Space Shuttle Discovery brought Dorothy Metcalf-Lindenburger, Stephanie Wilson and Naoko Yamazaki, to the station to join Tracy Caldwell Dyson during the STS-131 mission. NASA also has ISS veteran Peggy Whitson serving as chief astronaut this year.

Image credit: NASA TV
Almost Heaven: Women On The Frontiers Of Space.
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