A Soyuz capsule just aced a record-breaking 3-hour flight to the International Space Station

Oct 15, 2020
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"I'm sure there must be a good reason, but why does it take us like 3 days to do the same thing?"

The reason it we take 3 days is that using the longer method gives you more opportunities each month to launch at a target with a pre-determiined orbit, including a pre-determined phase and plane. The Russians can launch in this pattern, but can only do so a few times a month, if the ISS is to be in the right position, relative to the launching spacecraft.
 
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Oct 15, 2020
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Gemini 11 launched on September 12, 1966. Astronauts Charles "Pete" Conrad Jr. and Richard F. Gordon Jr. performed the first-ever direct-ascent (first orbit) rendezvous with an Agena Target Vehicle, docking with it 94 minutes after launch. This still stands as a record and I’m not impressed by the Russian effort. What took you guys so long?
 
Oct 15, 2020
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I would challenge this : on April 15th 1968 unmanned Soyuz vehicle named "Cosmos-213" has docked to a similar unmanned "Cosmos-212" just after 47 mins since launch. Both these cases tho (Cosmos-213 and US Manned Record) were cases where the target was launched from the same or very close launchpad, so the orbit of the target and the chasing vehicle were almost the same. This is not the case with ISS, so less than an hour docking doesn't seem possible based on the sky mechanics. Looking forward to see one lap docking, should be around 90 mins - this is faster than my commute sometimes!.
Anyway - big congrats to Roscosmos.
 
Jun 13, 2020
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I would challenge this : on April 15th 1968 unmanned Soyuz vehicle named "Cosmos-213" has docked to a similar unmanned "Cosmos-212" just after 47 mins since launch. Both these cases tho (Cosmos-213 and US Manned Record) were cases where the target was launched from the same or very close launchpad, so the orbit of the target and the chasing vehicle were almost the same. This is not the case with ISS, so less than an hour docking doesn't seem possible based on the sky mechanics. Looking forward to see one lap docking, should be around 90 mins - this is faster than my commute sometimes!.
Anyway - big congrats to Roscosmos.
The orbital plane of the ISS passes through the launchpad twice every day so in theory we have a launch opportunity twice every day. The bigger issue is phasing.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Torbjorn Larsson
Oct 15, 2020
2
0
10
I would challenge this : on April 15th 1968 unmanned Soyuz vehicle named "Cosmos-213" has docked to a similar unmanned "Cosmos-212" just after 47 mins since launch. Both these cases tho (Cosmos-213 and US Manned Record) were cases where the target was launched from the same or very close launchpad, so the orbit of the target and the chasing vehicle were almost the same. This is not the case with ISS, so less than an hour docking doesn't seem possible based on the sky mechanics. Looking forward to see one lap docking, should be around 90 mins - this is faster than my commute sometimes!.
Anyway - big congrats to Roscosmos.
I was unaware of this mission and it is impressive. but it was an unmanned robotic docking which puts in in a different class. Reconsidering my earlier comment, congratulations to the Russians though for both fine efforts.
 

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