The Soyuz TMA-17 crew capsule, carrying outgoing space station commander Oleg Kotov, Timothy Creamer, and Soichi Noguchi, settled to a safe parachute-and-rocket-assisted landing in Kazakhstan on Tuesday after a descent from the International Space Station.
Closing out a 163-day space mission, the Expedition 23 crew members fell through a clear blue sky and touched down on target near Dzhezkazgan in central Kazakhstan at 11:25 p.m. EDT. Recovery crews, including Russian, U.S., and Japanese personnel, quickly reached the capsule to provide assistance, CNET reports.
14 Mi-8 rescue planes, four An-12 and An-24 planes, and seven special rescue vehicles provided the safe landing of the capsule.
The state of the crew is estimated as good with their pulse rate normal, said the head of the Institute of medical and biological problem Igor Ushakov.
“The traditional test of eating apples has been completed successfully,” he jokingly told journalist. Ushakov said that on board the station there was a good doctor, Oleg Kotov, who was also the crew’s captain, according to RT.