Expedition 59 was the 59th Expedition to the International Space Station. It started with the arrival of the Soyuz MS-12 spacecraft carrying Aleksey Ovchinin, Nick Hague and Christina Koch, joining Oleg Kononenko, David Saint-Jacques and Anne McClain who transferred from Expedition 58. The expedition formally began on March 15, 2019 (March 14 in the Americas). Ovchinin and Hague were originally meant to fly to the ISS aboard Soyuz MS-10, but returned to Earth minutes after takeoff due to a contingency abort. The expedition formally ended with the undocking of the Soyuz MS-11 spacecraft carrying Kononenko, Saint-Jacques and McClain on 24 June 2019; Ovchinin, Hague and Koch transferred to Expedition 60.
|Mission type||ISS Expedition|
|Mission duration||101d 22h 24m|
|Space Station||International Space Station|
|Began||15 March 2019 01:01 UTC|
|Ended||24 June 2019 23:25 UTC|
|Arrived aboard||Soyuz MS-11 |
|Departed aboard||Soyuz MS-11|
|EVA duration||25h 55min|
(l-r) Saint-Jacques, McClain, Kononenko, Ovchinin, Hague and Koch
|Flight Engineer 1|
|Flight Engineer 2|
|Flight Engineer 3|
|Flight Engineer 4|
|Flight Engineer 5|
|EVA #||Spacewalkers||Start (UTC)||End (UTC)||Duration|
|22 March 2019
|22 March 2019
|6 hours, 39 minutes|
|McClain and Hague installed adapter plates while Dextre swaps the batteries between spacewalks. Get aheads included removing debris from the Unity Module in preparation for the arrival of Cygnus NG-11 in April, stowing tools for the repair of the flex hose rotary coupler, and securing tiebacks on the solar array blanket boxes. This spacewalk was originally going to be carried out by European astronaut Alexander Gerst and Hague as part of Expedition 57, although it was delayed due to the Soyuz MS-10 launch abort.|
|29 March 2019
|29 March 2019
|6 hours, 45 minutes|
|Hague and Koch finished the work of the first spacewalk and installed the final three adapter plates on the other side of the P4 Truss. The crew also transferred some tools and installed a grapple bar on the flex hose rotary coupler. Between spacewalks, Dextre will change the batteries and the exposed pallet will be loaded onto HTV-8 to be jettisoned into space where it will burn up. One of the batteries malfunctioned and will be removed by Dextre and discarded. Dextre will also replace a Battery Discharge Unit and will bring the failed unit which was damaged by the short inside where it will be returned to earth on SpaceX CRS-17. Until it is repaired P4 will use the old batteries left on the station as spares. Get aheads included installing gap spanners and breaking torque on the P6 batteries in preparation for their replacement by Expedition 62 crew members this summer. Hague also inspected sockets on P6 so the foot restraints could be attached. This spacewalk was supposed to be done by Anne McClain and Christina Koch as an all female spacewalk but because of problems with Christina's suit and the spare suit not ready or properly sized Anne McClain will have to sit this spacewalk out and will have to go out with David on the next spacewalk. This spacewalk became the first for Koch who became the 14th woman to walk in space.|
|8 April 2019
|8 April 2019
|6 hours 30 minutes|
|McClain and Saint Jacques routed cables to be used as a redundant power supply for Canadarm2. The crew installed studs on the Columbus Module in preparation for the installation of an exposed facility. The crew removed an adapter plate and reinstalled an old set of batteries as spares to replace a failed battery that malfunctioned on the last spacewalk. Saint Jacques became the first Canadian crew member to walk in space and the fourth Canadian to do a spacewalk since Chris Hadfield|
|29 May 2019
|29 May 2019
|6 hours 1 minute|
|Kononenko and Ovichinin removed experiments from the Pirs docking compartment and cleaned the windows. They also installed a handrail to connect Zarya to Poisk and re-positioned the Plume Measuring Unit. The crew then moved to the Zvesda Service Module and removed and jettisoned the Plasma Monitoring Units. Before they closed the hatch they sent a video of themselves and sang happy birthday in Russian to Alexei Leonov who is the first spacewalker and is celebrating his 85th birthday.|
Uncrewed spaceflights to the ISS
Resupply missions that visited the International Space Station during Expedition 59:
- ISS flight number
- ISS 72P
|Logistics||Soyuz-2.1a||4 Apr 2019, 11:01:35||4 Apr 2019, 14:22||29 Jul 2019, 10:44||115d 20h 22m||29 Jul 2019, 13:50|
- CRS NG-11
|Logistics||Antares 230||17 Apr 2019, 20:46:07||19 Apr 2019, 09:28||6 Aug 2019, 16:15||109d 6h 47m||N/A|
|Logistics||Falcon 9||4 May 2019, 06:48||6 May 2019, 13:33||3 Jun 2019, 16:01||28d 2h 28m||3 Jun 2019, 20:56|
Researchers on Expedition 59 will conduct experimentation on tissue chips since the microgravity environment can replicate the effects of aging and disease. The expedition will also conduct experiments on regolith simulants, Earth's atmospheric carbon cycle, and Astrobee robots designed to conduct routine chores aboard the ISS.
- Moran, Noah (March 14, 2019). "Soyuz Docked to Space Station". NASA Blogs.
- "NASA Astronaut Anne McClain, Crewmates Return from Space Station Mission". NASA. June 24, 2019.
- Gebhardt, Chris (March 14, 2019). "Soyuz MS-12 docks with the Space Station – NASASpaceFlight.com". NASASpaceflight.com.
- Strickland, Ashley (March 15, 2019). "New crew launches to space station". cnn.com. Cable News Network. Retrieved March 17, 2019.
Hague and Ovchinin are getting a second chance after their original October 11 launch failed. Shortly after launch, there was an anomaly with the booster, and the launch ascent was aborted, resulting in a ballistic landing of the spacecraft, according to a NASA statement.
- "Spacewalkers Complete Battery Swaps for Station Power Upgrades".
- "First Female Spacewalk Canceled Due To Lack Of Medium Sized Spacesuits Twitter Reacts".
- "NASA Astronauts Complete 215th Spacewalk at Station – Space Station". blogs.nasa.gov. Retrieved March 30, 2019.
- "MISSION SUMMARY" (PDF). nasa.gov. National Aeronautics and Space Administration . Retrieved March 17, 2019.