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Russia plans to launch new Soyuz spacecraft to replace a leaky one docked at the ISS

Photo by Natalia Kolesnikova / AFP via Getty Images

A Russian Soyuz spacecraft docked to the International Space Station (ISS) began leaking coolant early last month, leading to concerns about whether the vehicle would be safe to transport ISS crew members back to Earth.

NASA and Russian space agency Roscosmos have now announced they will be sending a replacement spacecraft for NASA astronaut Frank Rubio and Roscosmos cosmonauts Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitry Petelin in which to travel home. A SpaceX Crew Dragon is also available as a contingency option should it be required.

Roscosmos will send a replacement Soyuz called MS-23 to the ISS, launching on February 20th so it can be used to return the astronauts to Earth. This mission had been scheduled to launch in March carrying new crew…

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