10 Jul 2024 20:25

Cosmonaut Gorbunov to leave for U.S. on July 15 to train for flight to ISS

MOSCOW. July 10 (Interfax) - Cosmonaut Alexander Gorbunov will leave for the United States on July 15 to undergo the final stage of the training to fly to the International Space Station (ISS) as a member of the crew of the U.S. spacecraft Crew Dragon, the Cosmonaut Training Center said on Wednesday.

Gorbunov underwent a comprehensive test training to work on the Russian segment of the ISS on Wednesday, the Cosmonaut Training Center said. Specialists summed up the pre-flight training of the cosmonaut and assessed his readiness to work aboard the station.

"The cosmonaut received a positive evaluation of his work in the comprehensive test training," the Center said.

NASA said on July 9 the U.S. manned spacecraft Crew Dragon of the company SpaceX, carrying a crew of three astronauts and Roscosmos cosmonaut Gorbunov, will leave for the ISS no later than August.

The Crew-9 mission will include NASA astronauts Zena Cardman (spacecraft commander), Nick Hague, and Stephanie Wilson and Roscosmos cosmonaut Alexander Gorbunov. They are supposed to replace the Crew-8 members and spend around six months on the station.

In July 2022, Roscosmos and NASA signed an agreement on cross-flights by three Russian cosmonauts on board U.S. Crew Dragon spacecraft and by three U.S. astronauts on board Russian Soyuz MS spacecraft in 2022-2024 under the ISS program.

In December 2023, Roscosmos announced extending the cross-flight agreement with NASA until 2025. Roscosmos Executive Director for Manned Space Programs Sergei Krikalev told Interfax that the additional agreement provided for two more cross-flights to the ISS in the period up to 2025.