The Soviet Union has launched a new spaceship -- the Soyuz-32. There are two cosmonauts?
GV Soyuz rocket on launch pad in Baikonur
GV Rocket viewed from the pad
GV & TILT UP TO Soyuz rocket
SV Cosmonauts leaving coach and saluting
GV Soyuz blast off
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Background: The Soviet Union has launched a new spaceship -- the Soyuz-32. There are two cosmonauts on board, and one of the aims of the mission is to link up with the orbiting space station, Salyut-Six.
SYNOPSIS: The cosmonauts aboard the Soviet Union's 38th-manned space mission follow in the footsteps of Vladimir Kovalyonok and Alexander Ivanchenkov. They spent 138-days aboard the orbiting Salyut space laboratory -- the longest anyone has stayed in space. The launch is part of the Soviet Union's programme to perfect a shuttle system which could lead to the first permanently-orbiting manned space station.
Mission commander is thirty-seven-year old Lieutenant-Colonel Vladimir Lyakhov. An officer in the Soviet Airforce, this is his first space flight. His assistant, flight-engineer Valery Ryumin, is a former forestry engineer who took to designing space-equipment. He comes from Siberia and has served in the Soviet Army.
The first job for the two cosmonauts when they reach the station will be to check out all the equipment on board. Salyut has been in orbit for sixteen months and Soviet sources say the two will be overhauling its living and docking facilities.
The cosmonauts were said to be in good shape after the launch and all systems aboard their craft were looking normally. These visits to the orbiting laboratory give the Soviet scientific and medical experiments and photograph the earth's surface.