Progress sent to the ISS on an ultra-short flight pattern
Cargo spacecraft "Progress MS-09" went to the ISS on an ultrashort flight program, writes TASS. In this case, a specific double-turn scheme is used, which allows the transporter to dock to the station 3.5 hours after takeoff. Perhaps the same scheme will be tested with manned spacecraft "Soyuz".
Until now, the launches of the Soyuz and Progress spacecraft proceeded according to two schemes. The first one is ordinary, the second one is short. In the first case, it takes about two days from the moment the ship starts to dock with the ISS. Since the beginning of the 2010s, Roskosmos began to use a short circuit for part of the launches - in this case, about six hours pass between the start and the docking.
In particular, the scheme was used during one of the missions, Progress M-16M in 2012. As for the Soyuzov, in 2013 one of the launches was also carried out according to a short scheme. According to experts, in the case of a short flight, fuel is saved, and the crew feels more comfortable (if, of course, the flight is manned).
Last year it became known for the first time that Roscosmos developed an ultrashort flight, which takes only 3.5 hours of flight time. The ship passes only two orbits around the Earth. It was originally planned that such a scheme would be tested during the Progress MS-07 and Progress MS-08 missions. Nevertheless, the launches were transferred for various reasons, and in the end the ships were sent to the ISS in the usual two-day scheme.
The launch of "Progress" using the ultra-short circuit is made today. The Soyuz-2.1a launch vehicle with the Progress MS-09 spacecraft departed from site N 31 at Baikonur. Progress carried 2.5 tons of payload, including fuel and food. Among other systems and devices, the second spacesuit Orlan-ISS, SiriusSat-1 and SiriusSat-2 nanosatellites were sent to the ISS.