Trio of space station crew members set for landing

September 16, 2011 04:50


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CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. - Three crew members left the International Space Station for Earth on Thursday while their replacements remain delayed by an investigation into a Russian launch accident.

Former station commander Andrey Borisenko, cosmonaut Alexander Samokutyaev and US astronaut Ron Garan sealed themselves inside one of two Russian Soyuz capsules parked at the outpost at 5:30 p.m. EDT/(2130 GMT), closing out a five-month mission.

Three hours later, the Soyuz slipped out its berthing port at the station, a recently completed $100 billion project of 16 nations. Touchdown in Kazakhstan is set for midnight EDT/(0400 GMT) on Friday.

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