Mir Mission Chronicle/Mir Principal Expedition 17

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Mir Mission Chronicle by Sue McDonald
Mir Principal Expedition 17
Mir Principal Expedition 17

Commander Alexandr Viktorenko
Flight Engineer Yelena Kondakova
Cosmonaut Researcher Valeri Polyakov
Crew code name: Vityaz
Launched and landed in Soyuz-TM 20,

October 3, 1994 - March 22, 1995

169 days in space

Highlights: Mir 17 hosted the first ESA mission aboard Mir, Euromir 94, which ended November 4. Another international milestone was the rendezvous of the Space Shuttle Atlantis on its mission STS-63 with Mir. A new human spaceflight duration record was established by Polyakov with his 438-day stay on the station.

Background: In mid-November of 1994 (at the close of D.S.F. Portree’sMir Hardware Heritage”), the Mir space station complex, shown in figure 2, included these modules:

  • The Kvant astrophysics module (added April 9, 1987)
  • The Kvant 2 augmentation module (added December 6, 1989)
  • The Kristall technology module (added June 10, 1990)
  • Soyuz-TM 20, which on October 6, 1994, had delivered two members of the Mir Principal Expedition 17 crew, Commander Alexandr Viktorenko and Flight Engineer Yelena Kondakova, and Euromir 94 astronaut Ulf Merbold. They joined Valeri Polyakov, a station resident since the beginning of Principal Expedition 15 in January 1994.
  • Progress-M 25, a cargo resupply ship which had docked with the complex on November 13, 1994, to deliver water, fuel, food, and materials for repairs, including parts for the CSK-1 materials processing furnace.