Mission or Study ID: Expedition 63
International Space Station (ISS)
International Space Station
Expedition 63 began April 17, 2020 when the Soyuz MS-15 undocked from the ISS, carrying the Expedition 62 crew home. Remaining onboard were Expedition 63 commander Chris Cassidy (NASA) and flight engineers Anatoly Ivanishin (RSA) and Ivan Vagner (RSA).
On May 31, they welcomed the arrival of SpaceX’s Demo-2 spacecraft. Demo-2 was the last test flight of the Crewed Dragon before beginning operational flights for the Commercial Crew Program. Demo-2 carried a crew of two.
Upon their arrival, Douglas Hurley (NASA) and Robert Behnken (NASA) joined the Expedition 63 crew for 62 days. During their stay, they provided a much needed resource to help operate science research projects in progress. Behnken also teamed with Cassidy to complete four spacewalks before Demo-2 and her crew undocked from the ISS and returned to Earth completing a successful water landing near Florida on August 2, 2020.
While operating and maintaining the space station's systems, the remaining crew continued the many science experiments, new investigations, and technology demonstrations that were planned or in progress.
The first three Expedition 64 crewmembers, flight engineer Kate Rubins (NASA), Expedition 64 commander Sergey Ryzhikov (RSA), and flight engineer Sergey Kud-Sverchkov (RSA), launched to the ISS on October 14 in their Soyuz MS-17. The Expedition 64 crew had a week onboard to prepare for the beginning of their mission, while the Expedition 63 crew prepared for their return home.
Following a change of command ceremony on October 20, Expedition 63 ended on October 21, 2020 with the undocking of the Soyuz MS-16 spacecraft and return to Earth of Cassidy, Ivanishin, and Vagner.