U.S. astronaut to return to Earth on Russian Soyuz capsule

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A United States (U.S.) astronaut is due to return to Earth from the International Space Station (ISS) on Wednesday, with two cosmonauts aboard a Russian spacecraft.

U.S. astronaut Mark Vande Hei and cosmonauts Anton Shkaplerov and Pyotr Dubrov were scheduled to undock from the ISS in a Russian Soyuz space capsule. This would happen at 9:21 am CEST (0721 GMT) and land in central Kazakhstan at 1:28 pm CEST (1128 GMT).

Speculation that Vande Hei might not return to Earth on the Russian Soyuz spacecraft due to tensions between the U.S. and Russia over the war had been denied by both sides.

Vande Hei and Dubrov arrived at the ISS together on April 9, 2021.

During his stay on the space station, the 55-year-old Vande Hei broke Scott Kelly’s record for the longest stay in space by a U.S. astronaut, clocking up an impressive 341 consecutive days.

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