Expedition 18


ISS Expedition 18
Mission typeISS Expedition
Space StationInternational Space Station
Began12 October 2008 (2008-10-12)
Ended8 April 2009 (2009-04-09)
Arrived aboardSoyuz TMA-13
Chamitoff: STS-124
Space Shuttle Discovery
Magnus: STS-126
Space Shuttle Endeavour
Wakata: STS-119
Space Shuttle Discovery
Departed aboardSoyuz TMA-13
Chamitoff: STS-126
Space Shuttle Endeavour
Magnus: STS-119
Space Shuttle Discovery
Wakata: STS-127
Space Shuttle Endeavour
Crew size3
MembersMichael Fincke
Yuri Lonchakov
Gregory Chamitoff* (October–November)
Sandra Magnus (November–March)
Koichi Wakata† (March–April)
* – transferred from Expedition 17
† – transferred to Expedition 19
EVA duration10 hours, 27 minutes
ISS Expedition 18 patch.svg Expedition 18 crew portrait.jpg
(Left to right) Koichi Wakata, Michael Fincke, Sandra Magnus, Yuri Lonchakov, Gregory Chamitoff 

Expedition 18 was the 18th permanent crew of the International Space Station (ISS). The first two crew members, Michael Fincke, and Yuri Lonchakov were launched on 12 October 2008, aboard Soyuz TMA-13. With them was astronaut Sandra Magnus, who joined the Expedition 18 crew after launching on STS-126 and remained until departing on STS-119 on 25 March 2009. She was replaced by JAXA astronaut Koichi Wakata, who arrived at the ISS on STS-119 on 17 March 2009. Gregory Chamitoff, who joined Expedition 18 after Expedition 17 left the station,[1] ended his stay aboard ISS and returned to Earth with the STS-126 crew.


Position[2] First Part
(October 2008 to November 2008)
Second Part
(November 2008 to March 2009)
Third Part
(March 2009 to April 2009)
Commander United States Michael Fincke, NASA
Second spaceflight
Flight Engineer 1 Russia Yuri Lonchakov, RSA
Third and last spaceflight
Flight Engineer 2 United States Gregory Chamitoff, NASA
First Spaceflight
United States Sandra Magnus, NASA
Second spaceflight
Japan Koichi Wakata, JAXA
Third spaceflight

Crew notes

Salizhan Sharipov, was originally slated to be the Soyuz commander and Expedition 18 Flight Engineer 1, but was replaced by his back-up Yuri Lonchakov.

Backup crew

Mission plan

  • Launch vehicle: Soyuz TMA-13
  • Launch date: 12 October 2008 3:01 a.m. EDT
  • Docking: 14 October 2008
  • Spacewalks: 22 December 2008 (completed 23 December) and 10 March 2009
  • Landing: 8 April 2009

March 2009 debris incident

On 12 March 2009, a piece of debris from the upper stage of a Delta II rocket used to launch a GPS satellite in 1993, passed close to the ISS. The conjunction between the debris and the Space Station was not detected until it was too late to perform a collision avoidance manoeuvre. The crew prepared to evacuate the station by closing hatches between modules, and boarding the Soyuz spacecraft that was docked to provide emergency crew escape.[3] The debris did not hit the station, instead it passed by at 16:38 UTC, and the crew were cleared to resume operations about five minutes later.[3]

Extra-vehicular activity

Mission Spacewalkers Start (UTC) End (UTC) Duration
EVA 1 Yuri Lonchakov
Michael Fincke
23 December 2008
23 December 2008
5 hours, 38 minutes
Installed an electromagnetic energy measuring device, (Langmuir probe) on Pirs, removed the Russian Biorisk long-duration experiment, installed the Expose-R experiment package on Zvezda, but subsequently removed it after it failed to activate and transmit telemetry on ground command. Installed the Impulse experiment. EVA conducted from Pirs airlock in Russian Orlan space suits.[4][5]
EVA 2 Yuri Lonchakov
Michael Fincke
10 March 2009
10 March 2009
4 hours, 49 minutes
Installed the EXPOSE-R onto the universal science platform of the Zvezda module, removed tape straps from the area of the docking target on the Pirs airlock and docking compartment, inspected and photographed the exterior of the Russian portion of the station. EVA conducted from Pirs airlock in Russian Orlan space suits.[6]

See also


  1. ^ National Aeronautics and Space Administration (2008). "Expedition 18 Launch Preparations". NASA. Retrieved 7 October 2008.
  2. ^ NASA (2007). "NASA Announces Three International Space Station Crews". NASA. Retrieved 3 November 2007.
  3. ^ a b Bergin, Chris (12 March 2009). "RED threshold late notice conjunction threat misses ISS – Crew egress Soyuz". NASASpaceflight.com. Retrieved 12 March 2009.
  4. ^ NASA (2008). "ISS On-Orbit Status 12/23/08". NASA. Archived from the original on 9 January 2009. Retrieved 23 December 2008.
  5. ^ Associated Press (2008). "US, Russian space station crew conduct spacewalk". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Archived from the original on 1 January 2009. Retrieved 23 December 2008.
  6. ^ Brian Wagner (10 March 2009). "Space Station Astronauts Complete Space Walk Ahead of Shuttle Launch". Voice of America. Archived from the original on 13 March 2009. Retrieved 11 March 2009.

External links

  • NASA International Space Station page
  • NASA Expedition 18 page
  • Expedition 18 Photography