Soyuz MS-11 launches and docks successfully

Just over seven weeks after the MS-10 launch failed to reach space Russia resumed crewed launches today with the successful launch and docking of the Soyuz MS-11 spacecraft today.

The launch lifted off at 6:31 am EST and successfully docked at 12:34 pm EST just four orbits later.  Once the leak checks are completed the hatches between the ISS and Soyuz will be opened allow the new crew members to enter the station.

Aboard the MS-11 are Russian Cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko, NASA Astronaut Anne McClain, and Canadian Astronaut David Saint-Jacques.

This launch also marks the 100th of 2018 worldwide and the first to two scheduled for today.

Progress MS-02 launches to ISS

The Russian Progress MS-02 spacecraft launched successfully today beginning a two day journey to dock with the International Space Station.

Roscosmos elected to do the two day journey to allow time to fully test all the upgraded systems on the newer MS version of the vehicle.  The first Soyuz MS crewed mission is due to launch in June and validation of the systems is required before that can occur.

This is the second of three cargo vehicles scheduled to travel to the station in less than a month.