ESA astronaut Alexander Gerst testing his Sokol pressure suit and Soyuz spacecraft seat in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, in preparation for his launch to the International Space Station on 6 June 2018.
In the run-up to launch astronauts flying in a Soyuz spacecraft test their tailor-made seats and pressure suits to ensure a snug fit. The suit protects them in case of a sudden loss of pressure, and on launch day they might be worn for many hours as the astronauts wait in their capsule for liftoff.
The Soyuz seat is moulded to the astronaut’s body to be as comfortable and safe as possible, absorbing the vibrations during take off and the shock of landing.
Alexander Gerst launched into space on 6 June at 11:12 GMT alongside Roscosmos commander Sergei Prokopyev and NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.