Resident Crews of the International Space Station (ISS)

ISS: Expedition 56

hi res version (510 KB)

Patch ISS-56 Crew ISS-56

hi res version (695 KB)

hi res version (688 KB)

alternate crew photo

Crew, launch- and landing data

No.: 1 2 3 4 5 6
Nation: Germany
Surname:  Feustel  Artemyev  Arnold  Prokopyev  Gerst  Auñón-Chancellor
Given names:  Andrew Jay "Drew"  Oleg Germanovich  Richard Robert II "Ricky"  Sergei Valerievich  Alexander  Serena Maria
Position:  ISS-CDR  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer
Spacecraft (Launch):  Soyuz MS-08  Soyuz MS-08  Soyuz MS-08  Soyuz MS-09  Soyuz MS-09  Soyuz MS-09
Launch date:  21.03.2018  21.03.2018  21.03.2018  06.06.2018  06.06.2018  06.06.2018
Launchtime:  17:44:23.396 UTC  17:44:23.396 UTC  17:44:23.396 UTC  11:12:39.519 UTC  11:12:39.519 UTC  11:12:39.519 UTC
Spacecraft (Landing):  (Soyuz MS-08)  (Soyuz MS-08)  (Soyuz MS-08)  (Soyuz MS-09)  (Soyuz MS-09)  (Soyuz MS-09)
Landingdate:  (04.10.2018)  (04.10.2018)  (04.10.2018)  (13.12.2018)  (13.12.2018)  (13.12.2018)
Landingtime:  UTC  UTC  UTC  UTC  UTC  UTC
Mission duration:


unofficial Backup Crew

No.: 1 2 3 4 5 6
Nation:   Canada
Surname:  Hague  Ovchinin    Kononenko  Saint-Jacques  McClain
Given names:  Tyler Nicholas "Nick"  Aleksei Nikolaevich    Oleg Dmitriyevich  David  Anne Charlotte "Annimal"
Position:  ISS-CDR  Flight Engineer    Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer  Flight Engineer
Crew ISS-56 backup Crew ISS-56 backup

hi res version (653 KB)

hi res version (870 KB)

Expedition Report

Launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome.

ISS Expedition 56 began with the undocking of spacecraft Soyuz MS-07 on June 03, 2018 at 09:16:30 UTC. The former Expedition 55 (Anton Shkaplerov, Scott Tingle and Norishige Kanai) returned safely to Earth.

Following a two-days solo flight Soyuz MS-09 docked to ISS on June 08, 2018. Sergei Prokopyev, Alexander Gerst and Serena Auñón-Chancellor became the ISS Expedition 56 (together with ISS Expedition 55 crew members Oleg Artemyev, Andrew Feustel and Richard Arnold). With the arrival Expedition 56 became a six-person-crew.

Andrew Feustel and Richard Arnold performed the first spacewalk in Expedition 56 on June 14, 2018 (6h 49m). They installed a pair of brackets and high-definition cameras on the Harmony module that will help commercial crew vehicles align with the international docking adapter (IDA) at the forward end of Harmony. The cameras also will provide wireless data network access for experiments and facilities mounted on the ESA (European Space Agency) Columbus laboratory and Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency Kibo laboratory. The crew also replaced a camera on the station's starboard truss.

Among the US experiments are:

Testing Navigation Tools Aboard the Space Station:
Sextant Navigation tests use of a hand-held sextant for emergency navigation on missions in deep space as humans begin to travel farther from Earth. The ability to sight angles between celestial objects offers crews another option to find their way home if communications and main computers are compromised.

Identifying Microbes Aboard the Space Station:
Biomolecule Extraction and Sequencing Technology (BEST) advances the use of sequencing processes to identify microbes aboard the space station that current methods cannot detect and to assess mutations in the microbial genome that may be due to spaceflight. The investigation sequences microbes directly from a sample with minimal preparation, rather than with the traditional technique that requires growing a culture from the sample. Insight from BEST could help protect humans during future space exploration and provide new ways to monitor the presence of microbes in remote locations on Earth.

Experiments of the European Horizons mission:

Over the years, some incredible science has come about by accident when scientists have tested things on themselves. You've got to know what you're doing, or be adult enough to take the risk, so don't go experimenting with dangerous stuff at home. Alexander Gerst and his team will know what they're doing when they conduct the myotones experiment. It will be the first experiment to monitor basic biomechanical properties of human skeletal muscles, using a non-invasive, portable device. They want to find out more about the effect of zero gravity on the muscular system.

The Immuno-2 experiment will try to find out how the human immune system is affected, possibly weakened, by stress. It will combine biochemical and psychological factors, including stress from living and working in isolation, heavy workloads, and disrupted sleep patterns. Some experts say stress can cause debilitating mental illnesses - people get so sick they can't work. Immuno-2 may lead to new therapies.

Failing self-experiments we humans have always preferred to put the lives of other animals at risk first. Fear not, however. No birds will be harmed with the ICARUS experiment. In fact, it may help humans understand animal migration a whole lot better. Birds will be fitted with small transmitters, weighing about five grams (0.18 ounces). Data from their migrations - including location, acceleration and environmental factors - will be sent to the ISS.

Cold Atoms Lab:
This one's a bit complex, but it's another first for ISS research, and it can't be done on Earth. So here goes. It's all about understanding the smallest things in our universe - yes, we're talking quantum physics. First, scientists will generate clouds of rubidium and potassium atoms. Second, they will use laser light to slow down the movement of those atoms. The atoms then get trapped in an "atom chip" or magnetic field trap, and that's where the slowest and coldest atoms will remain. When their temperature drops close to absolute zero, they behave like a giant atom called a Bose-Einstein condensate (BEC). And that's what the scientists will want to examine macroscopically - to understand these atoms at a level of quantum physics, or quantum mechanics. Quantum mechanics has been described as the "rules of the game" that describe how atoms and single particles of light (photons) behave.

MagVector / MFX-2:
The experiment was started during Alexander Gerst's first ISS mission in 2014 (Expedition 40 / 41). During the Horizon's mission, MFX-2 will be equipped with advanced sensors and operated with various samples, including nickel-iron meteorites and chondrites, meteorites that have gone largely unaltered since the beginnings of our solar system.

EVA data

  Name Start End Duration Mission Airlock Suit
EVA Feustel, Andrew 14.06.2018, 12:06 UTC 14.06.2018, 18:55 UTC 6h 49m ISS-56 ISS - Quest EMU No. 3006
EVA Arnold, Richard 14.06.2018, 12:06 UTC 14.06.2018, 18:55 UTC 6h 49m ISS-56 ISS - Quest EMU No. 3003


Soyuz MS-07 undocking Lake Titicaca
Saudi Arabia Soyuz MS-09 docking
Welcome crew Soyuz MS-09 EVA Feustel
GRASP experiment

more Earth observation photos

more onboard photos

more EVA photos


Last update on June 19, 2018.