The Soyuz-FG rocket booster with a Soyuz TMA-04M spaceship carrying a new crew to the International Space Station, ISS, blasts off from the Russian leased Baikonur cosmodrome, in Kazakhstan, Tuesday, May 15, 2012. The Russian rocket is carrying U.S. astronaut Joseph Acaba, along with Russian cosmonauts Gennady Padalka and Sergei Revin. (AP Photo/Mikhail Metzel)
ALMATY, Kazakhstan - A three-man crew blasted off from a space centre in southern Kazakhstan on board a Russian-made Soyuz craft for a half-year stay at the International Space Station.
NASA astronaut Joseph Acaba and Russian cosmonauts Gennady Padalka and Sergei Revin set off from the Baikonur facility as scheduled Tuesday at 9:01 a.m. local time (0301 GMT).
Russia's space agency says the craft is due to dock with the space station Thursday morning and will join the three astronauts currently staying at the orbiting laboratory.
The crew will immediately begin preparation for the arrival next week of privately owned SpaceX's Dragon Capsule. It will be the first time a private company has launched space station supplies.
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