A Soyuz capsule, carrying an American astronaut, a Russian cosmonaut and an Italian astronaut, was successfully launched for the International Space Station on Friday.
The capsule carrying NASA's Randy Bresnik, Russia's Sergei Ryazansky and Italy's Paolo Nespoli was lifted off from the Russia-leased launch pad in Kazakhstan after sunset at 21:41 pm (local time) on Friday. According to reports, before docking at the space station, they will travel six hours.
Bresnik, Ryazansky and Nespoli will join NASA's Jack Fischer, Peggy Whitson and Fyodor Yurchikhin. Talking about Bresnik, he had earlier spent 10 days in the space in 2009 when he was on a mission. Ryazansky, who is from Russia, is the most experienced one among the three. He has spent 160 days in the space.
250 experiments will be conducted by the astronauts at the orbiting lab including physical sciences, biology, technology development and human research.
NASA reported that Flight Engineer Whitson earlier this week was doing research for a cancer study that may help develop more effective treatments for cancer patients.