An international trio heads for the space station after picture-perfect Soyuz launch


Soyuz launchSoyuz launch
A Russian Soyuz rocket rises from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, sending three spacefliers to the International Space Station. (NASA Photo / Joel Kowsky)

News Brief: Three spacefliers from three different countries are on their way to the International Space Station for a nearly six-month tour of duty after today’s launch from Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. NASA’s Serena Aunon-Chancellor, Germany’s Alexander Gerst and Russia’s Sergey Prokopyev blasted off in a Soyuz spacecraft and are due to arrive at the station on Friday. They’ll join NASA’s Drew Feustel and Ricky Arnold, as well as Russia’s Oleg Artemyev, for Expedition 56. Today’s launch video took a new tack, with the Russians providing a rocketcam view of the Earth below during the ascent to orbit, a la SpaceX. Take a look:

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