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Three Russian and American astronauts will stay on the International Space Station (ISS) for 6 months

FILE PHOTO: Roscosmos National Aerospace Corporation released an undated photo showing the International Space Station.
FILE PHOTO: Roscosmos National Aerospace Corporation released an undated photo showing the International Space Station.

Two Russian cosmonauts and one American astronaut will remain on the International Space Station for another six months due to damage to the Russian spacecraft.

Sergei Prokopyev, Dmitry Petrin, and Frank Rubio were due to end their six-month stay on the International Space Station in late March, but Roscosmos said Tuesday that the three Humans must stay on the space station until September.

The Soyuz MS-22 capsule that carried three astronauts to the International Space Station last September has been leaking coolant since mid-December, which both Roscosmos and NASA have blamed A micrometeoroid or space rock that hit the capsule.

Russia had planned to send an uncrewed Soyuz capsule to the International Space Station earlier this month to bring back the three astronauts, but the spacecraft’s launch was delayed because the Russian “Progress MS-21” cargo ship also leaked coolant. Officials blamed “external influences” for the leak.

Last October, the SpaceX Starship sent four more astronauts — two Americans, a Russian, and a Japanese — to the International Space Station, joining Prokopyev, Petrin, and Rubio. The International Space Station will get even more crowded next week when four astronauts, including one from the United Arab Emirates, arrive.

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