Coolant spraying instrument-assembly compartment of the Soyuz spacecraft.
Image credit: NASA

That human-rated Soyuz MS-23 that will fly uncrewed as a replacement craft for a compromised Soyuz now docked at the International Space Station has completed vacuum chamber testing.

The Soyuz MS-23 has also been tested for leaks and is now in a workplace for further pre-flight preparation, according to Russia’s Roscosmos in a Telegram posting.

Soyuz MS-23 in testing. Image credit: RSC Energia


Image credit: RSC Energia“In the coming days, specialists will check the functioning of the automatics of the combined propulsion system and the system of the descent executive bodies, will conduct control testing of the onboard digital computer complex and equipment of radio engineering systems, as well as refueling the lines of the ship’s thermal regime system with coolant,” the Roscosmos posting adds.



Coolant leak

It was a coolant leak in the Soyuz MS-22 last December that has created all the rush to checkout and fast track the launch of the Soyuz MS-23.

Due to a possible meteoroid strike, the vehicle’s radiator pipeline discharged into free space its coolant, putting to question the overall integrity and safety of the craft to return crew members back to Earth.

The hurried launch of a Soyuz-2.1a launch vehicle, topped by the unpiloted Soyuz MS-23, is slated for February 20, 2023.

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