Orbit of space station is adjusted

Sept. 14, 2012 at 3:20 PM

BRUSSELS, Sept. 14 (UPI) -- Europe's ATV-3 unmanned resupply spacecraft has raised the International Space Station's orbit to 263 miles, a mission control spokesman said.

The spacecraft's engines were fired at 10:15 p.m. EDT Thursday for a burn lasting almost nine minutes, raising the ISS orbit by about 1.2 miles, RIA Novosti reported.

The space station's orbital height is routinely adjusted periodically to counteract the force of Earth's gravity and prepare the station for the docking and undocking of supply craft and crew replacement missions.

Thursday's adjustment was carried out to prepare for the departure of Russia's Soyuz TMA-04M manned spacecraft, set to land in Kazakhstan on September 17, and the docking of the Soyuz TMA-06M manned spacecraft with the ISS scheduled for October 15.

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