NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration
NASA Space Science Data Coordinated Archive Header

Soyuz-TM 9



Soyuz TM-9 was launched by the USSR and docked with the orbital station Mir on February 13, 1990. The departing TM-8 crew reported that 3 of the TM-9 transport's 8 thermal blankets were damaged, a situation leading to 2 unscheduled spacewalks. Ground controllers feared that the torn insulation was blocking sensors used to align the spacecraft at reentry, and that as exposures to the space vacuum degraded TM-9's temperature controls, condensation would cause an electrical short. The temperature was stabilized by maneuvering Mir to keep TM-9 facing the sun, but the blanket damage could not be mitigated without special tools and an EVA ladder to reach the impaired area. The materials arrived with the Kristall module (90-048A) on June 10. Kristall docked at the front longitudinal port of the Mir complex, and was moved to a radial port opposite Kvant 2 the next day. The cosmonauts began the repair mission July 17, exiting through the Kvant 2 hatch. The thermal problem was solved by stowing the torn blankets out of the sensor's line of sight, a laborious task that took 6 hours -- near the limits of their space suits. Back in the Kvant 2 airlock, they discovered the outer door wouldn't close. Apparently, the chamber had not fully depressurized when they opened to hatch and its hinges were damaged. Cosmonauts Solovyov and Balandin had to depressurize an adjoining compartment, move into it, then repressurize it to enter the station proper. By then almost 7 hours had elapsed. On July 26, they reentered the open airlock to repair the buckled hinge. A short-term fix was accomplished during the 3-hr 31-mn spacewalk. The cosmonauts' 179-day, 1-hr, 18-mn mission ended August 9th when Soyuz TM-9 touched down at a pre-set area 72 km northeast of the city of Arkalyk.

Alternate Names

  • 20494
  • SoyuzTM-9

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 1990-02-11
Launch Vehicle: Soyuz
Launch Site: Tyuratam (Baikonur Cosmodrome), U.S.S.R
Mass: 7150 kg

Funding Agency

  • Unknown (U.S.S.R)


  • Human Crew

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this spacecraft can be directed to: Coordinated Request and User Support Office

[] NASA Logo -