Space capsule parachutes into Kazakhstan after more than 200 days away
'It's like a roller coaster or w
'It's like a roller coaster or washing machine': Soyuz space capsule lands in Kazakhstan carrying three astronauts after more than 200 days at the International Space Station
- NASA astronaut Anne McClain, Canadian David Saint-Jacques and Russian Oleg Kononenko landed Tuesday
- The Soyuz MS-11 used its parachute and braking thrusters as it descended to the steppes of Kazakhstan
- The astronauts had spent 204 days aboard the International Space Station carrying out their research
- McClain appeared in high spirits, while the other two looked exhausted as they adjusted to gravity on landing
Three astronauts have safely returned to Earth after spending more than 200 days aboard the International Space Station.
The Soyuz MS-11 capsule with astronauts from Canada, Russia and the United States parachuted into the steppes of Kazakhstan at 8.47am local time (1.47am BST) on Tuesday, less than a minute ahead of the scheduled time, after a three-and-a-half-hour flight from the orbiting lab.
Two of the astronauts had completed their maiden flights, Anne McClain of the U.S. and David Saint-Jacques of Canada, and expedition commander Oleg Kononenko of Russia ended his fourth space mission.
'It takes about 3.5 hours between undocking from the space station to landing in Kazakhstan. It's been described as a roller coaster or a washing machine - dynamic, but also a precise and highly choreographed process,' McClain wrote on Twitter.
A Russian search and rescue team works on the site of landing of the Soyuz MS-11 capsule carrying the International Space Station (ISS) crew of NASA astronaut Anne McClain, Russian cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko and David Saint-Jacques of the Canadian Space Agency, in a remote area outside the town of Dzhezkazgan in the steppes of Kazakhstan
The Soyuz MS-11 capsule lands in a burst of heat on the flat lands of Kazakhstan early on Tuesday morning, bringing three astronauts back to Earth after 204 days on the ISS
NASA astronaut Anne McClain looks through a porthole out of the capsule. She tweeted: 'It takes about 3.5 hours between undocking from the space station to landing in Kazakhstan. It's been described as a roller coaster or a washing machine - dynamic, but also a precise and highly choreographed process'
McClain looks in high spirits as she is helped out of the craft by Russian forces - Russian cosmonaut Kononenko looked visibly tired and pale as he was extracted from the craft
The Soyuz MS-11 was lowered by parachute and used braking thrusters to land safely as the crew were met by Russian forces, as well as medical teams from NASA and the Canadian Space Agency.
Americans Nick Hague and Christina Koch and Russia's Alexey Ovchinin remain aboard the space station, while another three-man crew awaits departure.
Space veteran Kononenko, who was the first one to be extracted from the capsule, looked visibly tired and pale.
A plume of dust from the parachute flies into the air as a Russian helicopter circles above the Kazakhstan countryside on Tuesday
Canadian David Saint-Jacques is helped from the craft, before departing the space station he tweeted: 'See you soon on mothership Earth!'
Roscosmos cosmonaut Oleg Kononenko emerges from the capsule - Kononenko has now stayed for 737 days in space, making him the sixth in the world for most time spent away from the Earth
Ground personnel help NASA astronaut Anne McClain to get out of the Soyuz MS-11 capsule shortly after landing in a remote area outside the town of Dzhezkazgan
McClain and Saint-Jacques were more energetic and gave a thumbs-up to the recovery team who greeted the three with applause.
The astronauts were put on camping chairs in the sun just by the capsule for some respite and initial medical checks as they adjusted to gravity.
When asked by a reporter on site if he liked the weather, Kononenko said he was 'happy to see any kind of weather' after spending 204 days in space.
Dirt and dust from the plains of the Kazakh steppes is blown into the air by the landing capsule (left) as the parachute begins to slacken (right)
Expedition 59 Canadian Space Agency astronaut David Saint-Jacques is carried to a medical tent shortly after touching down
Ground personnel carry Kononenko (left) and McClain (right) - the crew will be flown by helicopter to the Kazakh town of Karaganda for a welcoming ceremony before the Russian cosmonaut flies back to Star City near Moscow and McClain and Saint-Jacques fly back to Houston
The crew will be flown by helicopter to the Kazakh town of Karaganda for a welcoming ceremony before the Russian cosmonaut flies back to Star City near Moscow and McClain and Saint-Jacques fly back to Houston.
The astronauts had taken part in experiments and space walks while aboard the ISS, Collect Space reported.
Kononenko has now stayed for 737 days in space, making him the sixth in the world for most time spent away from the Earth.