Expedition 7

Expedition 7 was the seventh expedition to the International Space Station.

ISS Expedition 7
Mission typeISS Expedition
Mission duration182 days, 16 hours, 20 minutes, 49 seconds (at ISS)
184 days, 22 hours, 46 minutes, 28 seconds (launch to landing)
Distance travelled~123,133,253 kilometres (76,511,456 mi)
Orbits completed2,895
Space StationInternational Space Station
Began28 April 2003, 05:56:20 (2003-04-28UTC05:56:20Z) UTC
Ended27 October 2003, 22:17:09 (2003-10-27UTC22:17:10Z) UTC
Arrived aboardSoyuz TMA-2
Departed aboardSoyuz TMA-2
Crew size2
MembersYuri Malenchenko
Ed Lu

L-R: Yuri Malenchenko and Ed Lu


Position Astronaut
Commander Yuri Malenchenko, RSA
Third spaceflight
Flight Engineer 1 Ed Lu, NASA
Third and last spaceflight

Backup Crew

Position Astronaut
Commander Aleksandr Kaleri, RSA
Fourth spaceflight
Flight Engineer 1 C. Micheal Foale, NASA
Sixth spaceflight

Original Crew

Position Astronaut
Commander Yuri Malenchenko, RSA
Third spaceflight
Flight Engineer 1 Ed Lu, NASA
Third and last spaceflight
Flight Engineer 2 Aleksandr Kaleri, RSA
Fourth spaceflight

Mission parameters

Mission objectives

The seventh crew of the International Space Station lifted off in Soyuz TMA-2 from the Russian Space Agency's Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on 25 April 2003, at 05:56:20 UTC. The Soyuz docked on 28 April 2003 and took over command of the ISS. The Space Shuttle fleet had been grounded due to the Columbia disaster, so the crew size was reduced to two, as opposed to the three that could be carried by the shuttle. The Expedition Seven crew—along with European Space Agency Astronaut Pedro Duque—landed back on Earth on 27 October 2003 at Kazakhstan at 02:41:20 UTC, after undocking from the International Space Station in their Soyuz spacecraft at 23:17 UTC.

Due to the reduced crew size, the scientific work had to be scaled down as well. Only 15 different experiments were conducted during the mission. Malenchenko and Lu were also tasked with periodic maintenance work on the station, as well as spacewalk training (although no spacewalks were planned). Supplies were delivered by Progress M1-10 in June and Progress M-48 in August.

From Houston, ISS Spacecraft Communicator Mike Fossum informed Expedition 7 Commander Yuri Malenchenko and Science Officer Edward Lu on 15 October 2003 of the successful launch of the Long March rocket carrying the Shenzhou 5 spacecraft and Chinese astronaut Yang Liwei. "It's really some exciting news to share. The world's spacefaring nations have been joined by a new member tonight: China."

"First off, we want to congratulate them," Lu replied. "The more people that go into space, the better off we all are. This is a great achievement and good for everyone in the long run." In Chinese, he later added, "Welcome to space. Have a safe journey."

"I would also like to say I love to have somebody else in space instead of me and Ed," said Malenchenko. "I also know this is great for thousands and thousands of people from China. I congratulate all of them."

Malenchenko and Lu were previously crewmates on the STS-106 shuttle mission and did a spacewalk together during that flight.


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