Three new crew members have arrived on the International Space Station (ISS) after a launch carried out below tight restrictions as a result of coronavirus.
The Russian Soyuz rocket carrying cosmonauts Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Vagner and Nasa astronaut Chris Cassidy took off from Kazakhstan on Thursday.
Pre-launch protocols had been modified to forestall the virus being taken to the ISS.
Only important personnel had been allowed on the launch website for the blast-off.
Support staff wore masks and saved their distance because the crew walked to the bus to take them to the spacecraft.
Earlier, Chris Cassidy mentioned not having their households in Baikonur to cheer them on for the launch had affected the crew, however he added: “We perceive that the entire world can also be impacted by the identical disaster.
Following the launch Nasa Administrator Jim Bridenstine tweeted his congratulations.
The three will change Oleg Skripochka, Andrew Morgan and Jessica Meir who’re because of make their return journey from the ISS on 17 April.
ISS crew routinely go into quarantine forward of launch day, however due to the coronavirus pandemic the method started even earlier final month.
Traditional pre-launch fanfare and visits to Moscow had been deserted because the three – together with their reserve crew – stayed in isolation at Russia’s Star City coaching centre outdoors the capital.
A last press convention at Baikonur was made – as normal – from behind a glass wall as an added barrier to an infection.
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With thousands and thousands of individuals world wide compelled to remain indoors by the coronavirus, cosmonauts and astronauts have been providing recommendation on the best way to survive self-isolation.
Nasa’s Scott Kelly wrote within the New York Times final month that the factor he missed most throughout practically a 12 months in area from 2015 to 2016 was nature – “the colour green, the smell of fresh dirt, and the feel of warm sun on my face”.
He beneficial walks within the contemporary air for many who had been ready – however mentioned time in entrance of a display screen shouldn’t be dominated out.
He mentioned he and his crew mates had loved common “movie nights” on the ISS.
The ISS has been orbiting the Earth since 1998. Five companions are concerned – the US, Russia, Japan, Canada and the European Space Agency.