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Soyuz MS-25 flight to Space Station launches successfully after Thursday’s scrub

A Soyuz MS-25 vehicle successfully launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Saturday and is scheduled to dock with the International Space Station Monday. Photo by Yuri Kochetkov/EPA-EFE

A Soyuz MS-25 vehicle successfully launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Saturday and is scheduled to dock with the International Space Station Monday. Photo by Yuri Kochetkov/EPA-EFE

March 23 (UPI) — A Soyuz MS-25 spacecraft headed to the International Space Station successfully launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on Saturday and has entered near-Earth orbit, officials said.

The spacecraft, crewed by NASA astronaut Tracy Dyson, Roscosmos cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy and Marina Vasilevskaya of Belarus, lifted off at 8:36 a.m. EDT, the Russian state news agency TASS reported.

The spacecraft is scheduled to dock with the space station’s Prichal nodal module at about 11:09 a.m. on Monday, according to NASA.

Vasilevskaya is Belarus’ first astronaut to join a space mission. She and Novitskiy are scheduled to spend 12 days on the space station before returning to Earth on the Soyuz MS-24 along with NASA astronaut Loral O’Hara on April 6.

Dyson is scheduled to return with Roscosmos cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko and Nikolay Chub in September.

Saturday’s successful launch occurred two days after an initial launch was scrubbed 20 seconds prior to liftoff Thursday.

NASA spokesman Rob Navias said the engines did not fire as intended, which triggered an automatic abort system. Roscosmos engineers removed the crew and secured the rocket after ceasing fueling operations Thursday.

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