Drew “A.J.” Feustel of Lake Orion is set to launch to the International Space Station at 1:45 p.m. today, according to WDIV-TV.
Feustel joins fellow American astronaut Rick Arnold and Russian cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev aboard the Soyuz MS-08, the station reported.
According to NASA, after launching from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, the three will embark on a 50-hour, 34-orbit flight to the International Space Station — they are expected to arrive at the space station on Friday and dock to the Poisk module at 3:41 p.m.
“The orbiting trio continues to ensure the station is flying in tip-top shape while conducting advanced space science to benefit humans on Earth and in space,” a NASA blog post on Monday said.
This trip marks NASA’s Expedition 55, in which two spacewalks are planned, and “researchers will study Earth atmospherics, the effects of microgravity on bone marrow, materials’ responses to space environments, and biological samples’ responses to simulated gravity,” according to the mission summary.
Waiting for Feustel, Arnold and Artemyev on board the orbital laboratory are Expedition 55 Commander Anton Shkaplerov and Flight Engineers Scott Tingle and Norishige Kanai, according to a NASA blog post on March 5.
According to NASA, Feustel has been assigned to be the Flight Engineer for Expedition 55 and will serve Commander for NASA’s Expedition 56.
Feustel told WDIV that he’s always been surrounded by space — the house he grew up in is located on Saturn Drive, and streets in the surrounding neighborhoods included: Armstrong, Gemini and Mercury.
- Feustel was selected by NASA in 2000 and assigned to Expedition 55/56 scheduled to launch in March 2018.
- He has a Ph.D. in Geological Sciences, specializing in Seismology
- He is a veteran of two space flights, having served on the: STS-125, which launched on Atlantis in 2009 and was the final mission to service the Hubble Space Telescope, and the STS-134 which launched on Endeavor in 2011 to deliver an Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer and an ExPress Logistics Carrier to the International Space Station
- He has logged more than 29 days in space and over 42 hours in spacewalks
- Feustel restored 1950’s Jaguars while working as a mechanic at International Autoworks, Ltd., in Farmington Hills.
Contact reporter Aleanna Siacon at ASiacon@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter: @AleannaSiacon.
Read or Share this story: http://on.freep.com/2FQmwJE