Russian robotic spacecraft with supplies for crew members docked to International Space Station yesterday.
Russian resupply spacecraft, Progress-MS 66P, arrived to communication zone around ISS at 15:39 GMT and take course on rendez vous. Two Russian cosmonauts Yuri Malenchenko and Alexey Ovchinin started monitoring parameters of Progress and ready to take control over Progress in case problems during docking. Eight minutes before planned locking Progress in docking port, scheduled by Roscosmos for 18:01 GMT, spacecraft started docking procedure. Station was flying at that moment on altitude of 402.96 km over Kazakhstan. Using Kurs-NA (newly installed in MS version of Progress), 66P started to close slowly to aft docking port of Zvezda module. Onboard systems docked automatically five minutes after at 17:58 GMT – three minutes before planned time.
With keeping all the safety procedures and checking if there were no leaks, crew started to unload cargo 1418 kg dry cargo few hours later. Progress delivered: Carbon dioxide sensor, vacuum pumps, air filters, CBO water refinement system, smoke detector and fire extinguisher, CVM onboard computer, sets of tools, PK-4 container (joined ESA and Roscosmos experiment on low temperature gaseous mixtures installed in Columbus European Physiology Module (EPM)), health care equipment and rations provided by NASA for American astronaut and rations provided by Roscosmos. Propellant (540 kg), water for crew and oxygen generators (420 kg) and oxygen (47 kg) were pumped form Progress to tanks on ISS. In cargo delivered to ISS one thing is interesting. It is nanosatellite TPU-120 made at Tomsk Polytechnic University. This small spacecraft is made with large utilization of plastic and composites with hull and electric battery (first zirconium part created with 3D printing technology) manufactured by 3D printer. It will be deployed by crew members during spacewalk. Next resupply mission will be performed by SpaceX Dragon spacecraft with launch scheduled at 8th April 2016 on 20:43 GMT.