ISS orbit raised on Tuesday

On Tuesday, the orbit of the International Space Station (ISS) was raised on as planned, Flight Control Centre told RIA Novosti. The height of the orbit of the station has increased by four kilometres on average. This will ensure that the ISS is at an optimal position to receive the Russian Soyuz-TMA spaceship carrying the crew of the ninth permanent expedition.

This orbital manoeuvre was made with the help of the engines of a Progress-M1-11, a Russian cargo spaceship that is presently docked to the ISS.

"The only impulse was initiated on March 3 at 1:40 a.m., Moscow time. The ship's engines fired for 530 seconds," Valery Lyndin, the official spokesman for the Flight Control Centre, told RIA Novosti.

According to him, the main goal of the manoeuvre was to reach a working orbit to dock with the piloted Soyuz to be launched on April 19 from the Baikonur space centre. Mr. Lyndin said that another correction of the ISS's orbit has been planned for March 31.

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