Soyuz leaves space station with astronauts, tourist

April 8th, 2009 - 12:14 pm ICT by IANS  

Moscow, April 8 (DPA) Two astronauts from the US and Russia and a space tourist left the International Space Station (ISS) Wednesday morning on board a Soyuz space capsule to return to Earth.
The flight centre near Moscow reported that Soyuz undocked from ISS Wednesday morning and is expected to land in the Kazakhstan steppe around 0716 GMT, the Interfax news agency said.

On board are Russian cosmonaut Yuri Lonchakov, US astronaut Micheael Fincke as well as Charles Simonyi, a space tourist also from the US.

The return had to be delayed for one day because of flooding in the landing area.

Lonchakov and Fincke focussed on scientific experiments during their six-month stay aboard ISS.

Simonyi, 60, arrived on ISS March 28. It has been the second trip to the space station for the Hungarian-born software developer.

The space tourist said he paid $35 million for his trip, about $10 million more than for his first space holiday in 2007.

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