ALMATY, Kazakhstan — A trio of astronauts traveling onboard a Russian-made Soyuz capsule reached the International Space Station on Tuesday, two days after leaving the Baikonur cosmodrome in southern Kazakhstan.
NASA astronaut Suni Williams, veteran Russian cosmonaut Yuri Malenchenko, and Aki Hoshide of Japan docked Tuesday slightly ahead of schedule. They will work at the orbiting laboratory until November.
They join the current station residents: Russians Gennady Padalka and Sergei Revin, and US astronaut Joe Acaba.
The station, which orbits up to 255 miles above the earth, is soon to handle an unprecedented level of traffic.
Japan’s HTV3 cargo ship will reach the station next week, the first of nine craft due to make contact with the orbiting satellite over a 17-day period.
Williams, a graduate of Needham High School, is on her second mission to the space station. In 2007, she set a record for women, with 195 days in space.