Russian deputy head of ISS mission Valery Ryumin has announced that during preflight reactivation of Soyuz TMA2 spacecraft, the crew erroneously pushed two buttons at one and the same time and prematurely started the engines for a short time. The mistake caused the ISS to turn 25 degrees.
"It happened because during systems check-up one of crew members threw the safety lid open and pushed simultaneously both buttons," Mr. Ryumin said. He also mentioned that in order to bring the station back to its normal position a lot of fuel had to be spent.
According to Mr. Ryumin, the FCC decided to postpone the investigation of the incident. "When it happened, we decided not to put additional stress on crew members, but later we will conduct a thorough investigation of this unfortunate incident," he announced.
Today, the crew of Expedition 7 consisting of its commander Yuri Malenchenko and flight engineer Edward Lu, who spent exactly six months on orbit, returned to Earth. They were accompanied by member of visiting Expedition 5 Pedro Duque, who spent 10 days on orbit. The crew made a scheduled landing at 5:40 a.m. Moscow time, 38 km to the south of the town of Arkalyk in Kazakhstan.