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HomeNewsISS bids goodbye to Türkiye's first astronaut as space capsule departs

ISS bids goodbye to Türkiye’s first astronaut as space capsule departs

The talk of the town is the homecoming of the first astronaut from Türkiye, Alper Gezeravcı, who honorably represented his country at the International Space Station (ISS) for the Axiom-3 mission. Reportedly, he spent fourteen fruitful days on the station, engaging in experiments that herald a new era of scientific endeavor. Despite the rollercoaster adventure of venturing into the unknown, it was announced on Wednesday that his extraterrestrial stint has ended and he’s homeward-bound.

The astronaut is set to return in a space capsule with a diverse team of fellow intergalactic explorers hailing from Spain, Italy, and Sweden. Notably, the hatch of the capsule that will carry the group back to Earth painted a picture of international cooperation and the shared pursuit of knowledge among these different nations.

The hatch surprisingly closed slightly ahead of schedule at 7:25 a.m. Eastern Time (1225GMT). According to SpaceX, the capsule, nicknamed Dragon, plans to undock at 9:20 a.m. ET (1420GMT), giving the crew a small window to prepare for the trek home. The capsule, carrying the dynamic Axiom-3 Mission crew, has completed a circuit of Earth spanning over two weeks. The crew’s camaraderie and hard work will soon be put to the test during this complex undocking phase.

After successfully undocking, a critical step is for the capsule to exit its current orbit and re-enter Earth’s atmosphere safely. This phase is fraught with potential dangers, considering the high velocity at which the capsule travels and the fiery atmospheric entry that could damage the vessel if not managed properly. Yet, the expertise of the crew and the SpaceX team should navigate this perilous process without issue.

Next, as the Dragon capsule hurtles towards Earth’s surface, particularly aiming for a watery landing, it will deploy parachutes to ensure a safe and controlled descent. The parachutes will slow the plummeting capsule, making the final stages of this incredible journey as smooth as possible for the brave travelers.

While the countdown is on, the process is expected to conclude approximately 47 hours after the capsule undocks, or potentially on Friday morning, Eastern Time in the United States. By then, the team would safely be back on solid ground, and Gezeravcı would officially be the first astronaut from Türkiye to complete a mission at the ISS.

The iconic Axiom-3 mission was launched from NASA’s illustrious Kennedy Space Center in Florida on Jan. 19. The team blazed off the launchpad on a high-powered SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket, embarking on a mission set to change the way we perceive space exploration, international cooperation in scientific adventures, and Turkey’s place in space science.

The day after their historic launch, Jan. 20, the Ax-3 crew triumphantly docked at the International Space Station. This marked the beginning of their grand adventure in orbit, a true gem of international scientific cooperation.

Despite their short stay on the ISS, which only lasted just over two weeks, the diligent crew, led by the Turkish Air Force pilot Col. Gezeravcı, achieved exceptional results. They successfully carried out over 30 scientific experiments, including about fifteen experiments single-handedly managed by the impressive Turkish astronaut himself.

Although the crew’s planned return has been delayed many times, primarily due to adverse weather conditions, the team and supporters worldwide remain unperturbed. With their eyes firm on their native soils, the team is prepared and excited for their upcoming journey homewards. Their return marks an end to an adventure that will long be recorded in the annals of space history.

Space Capsule Carrying Türkiye’s First Astronaut Leaves ISS – Reference

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Author: Turkish News