André Kuipers on way back to Earth

ESA astronaut André Kuipers in the Soyuz capsule
André Kuipers in the Soyuz TMA-4 before the launch on 19 april 2004
30 April 2004

After eleven days in space ESA astronaut André Kuipers has started his return journey to Earth.

Undocking of the Soyuz TMA-3 capsule occurred at exactly 22:52 CEST (20:52 UT) on Thursday 29 April. On board with André Kuipers are the Expedition 8 crew; Russian cosmonaut Alexander Kaleri and NASA astronaut Michael Foale, who are returning to Earth after a six month stay on the Space Station.

The Soyuz will make one orbit of Earth before the descent is initiated by firing the engines for 261 seconds. The Soyuz TMA-3 is expected to land at 02:11 CEST (00:11 UT) tonight.

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