Expedition 56 commander Andrew Feustal (NASA) turned command of the International Space Station (ISS) over to Alexander Gerst (ESA) on October 4, 2018, marking the end of Expedition 56 and the beginning of Expedition 57. Feustal, and his Expedition 56 crewmates, Oleg Artemyev (RSA) and Richard Arnold (NASA) then departed the ISS in their Soyuz spacecraft, landing in Kazakhstan about three hours later.
Gerst will remain aboard the International Space Station (ISS) with crewmates Serena Auñón-Chancellor (NASA), and Sergey Prokopyev (RSA) to await the arrival of the remaining Expedition 57 crew a week later. Alexey Ovchinin (RSA) and Nick Hague (NASA) are expected to launch on October 11, 2018.
The Expedition 57 crew will continue to maintain the ISS while performing many research experiments that will pave the way for future long-duration exploration missions. But there will be no shortage of excitement as visiting vehicles may include the first demonstration flight (uncrewed) of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.
Expedition 57 is expected to end in mid-December of 2018