Russian space agency Roscosmos will launch a cargo-laden Progress MS-20 space freighter to the International Space Station (ISS) on June 3. :02h (IST) [12:32 pm Moscow time]. According to Russian cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev, who is also a TASS special correspondent from the space station, the Progress capsule will arrive at the station with more than 2,500 kg of cargo.
На Байконуре работы по графику второго стартового дня завершены. Идем по плану. pic.twitter.com/YQ24PlSwAu
— РОГОЗИН (@Rogozin) June 1, 2022
Electric guitar, violin strings and more
Roscosmos uses the resupply mission to ship an electric guitar for the amusement of its cosmonauts. The guitar is sent at the request of cosmonaut Sergey Korsakov who revealed on his Telegram channel that he asked his relatives to send the instrument to bring him psychological relief.
Artemyev reported for TASS that the Progress capsule is also bringing strings for a violin that is already on board the flying lab. Along with these unusual supplies, Roscosmos is also sending around 559 kg of propellant, 40 kg of compressed nitrogen in cylinders and 420 liters of drinking water.
In addition, the cargo hold also includes 1,458 kg of other equipment such as medical supplies, sanitation, clothing, standard food rations as well as other edible items for the Expedition 67 crew. A 3D printer is also sent to the orbital outpost, Artemyev revealed. As for the launch itself, it will be carried out from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan using a rocket bearing the inscription Donbas as well as painted flags of Donetsk and Luhansk. Donetsk and Lugansk are the breakaway regions of Ukraine which are collectively called Donbas. Both regions are recognized as republics by Russia and rebel regions by Ukraine.
Russian cooperation in space
While Russia is cooperating in outer space, mainly in the management of the space station for now, Dmitry Rogozin recently announced that Roscosmos will leave the outpost after a year’s notice. The head of Roscosmos blamed the move on Western sanctions after calling for an “unconditional” lifting of the blockade. “The decision has already been made, we don’t have to talk about it publicly,” Rogozin had said according to Rossiya 24. Russia’s decision to withdraw from the international space partnership could be a huge setback for the ISS because it has served as a platform for global cooperation over the past three decades.
More importantly, Russia currently plays a huge role in keeping the ISS afloat, as its spacecraft docked outside the space station are used for orbital correction and to avoid space debris in low earth orbit.