Space station’s orbit raised to ensure safe docking

MOSCOW, Dec. 14 (PNA/RIA Novosti) -– The orbit of the International Space Station was raised on Friday to ensure safe docking of a Russian spacecraft early next year, said a spokesman for Russia’s mission control.

Corrections to the space station’s orbit are periodically conducted to compensate for Earth’s gravity and to ensure successful dockings.

This time, the adjustment was performed to ensure that Russia’s Progress M-22M space freighter, to be launched on February 5, safely docks with the station.

Thrusters on Russia’s Progress M-21M spacecraft, currently docked at the ISS, were switched on for nearly 10 minutes, giving the station a boost of about 1.3 meters (4.3 feet) per second.

As a result, the average altitude of the station was raised by 2.3 kilometers (1.4 miles), to 417.6 kilometers (259.5 miles). (PNA/RIA Novosti)