WASHINGTON – NASA and its international partners have named the crews that will live and work aboard the International Space Station for the next two years. The crew members make up three expeditions to the station and represent four space agencies.

The assignments include the first long-duration station flight for a Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) astronaut and the second long-duration station flight for an astronaut from the European Space Agency (ESA). The JAXA and ESA astronauts will work on the installation and checkout of the Japanese Experiment Module Kibo and European Columbus laboratories on the station.

NASA astronaut and veteran station crew member Peggy A. Whitson will command Expedition 16, set to begin in fall 2007. The flight engineers for the mission include cosmonaut and Russian Air Force Col. Yuri I. Malenchenko, ESA astronaut and French Air Force Brig. Gen. Leopold Eyharts and NASA astronaut Garrett E. Reisman.

Malenchenko will command the Russian Soyuz spacecraft that will carry him and Whitson to the station and return them to Earth in spring 2008. They will join NASA astronaut Daniel M. Tani aboard the station.

Eyharts will fly to the station on space shuttle mission STS-122, which is expected to deliver the Columbus lab this fall. Eyharts will remain on the station to oversee activation and checkout of the laboratory, while Tani takes the shuttle home.

Reisman will fly on shuttle Endeavour’s STS-123 mission to replace Eyharts. Reisman will remain on the station for about six months and return on shuttle mission STS-119, targeted for summer 2008. Russian Air Force Lt. Col. Sergei Volkov will command Expedition 17. Expedition 17 flight engineers include cosmonaut Oleg D. Kononenko and NASA astronaut Sandra H. Magnus.

Kononenko will command the Soyuz spacecraft that will carry him and Volkov to the station in spring 2008 and bring them home in fall 2008.

Magnus will arrive on STS-119 and remain aboard the station. Magnus will return on the STS-126 mission targeted for summer 2008. NASA astronaut and station veteran Air Force Lt. Col. E. Michael Fincke will command Expedition 18. Expedition 18 flight engineers include cosmonaut and veteran station crew member Russian Air Force Col. Salizhan S. Sharipov, JAXA astronaut Koichi Wakata and NASA astronaut Gregory E. Chamitoff.

Sharipov will command the Soyuz that will carry him and Fincke to the station in fall 2008 and back to Earth in spring 2009.

Wakata will fly to the station on STS-126 to replace Magnus. Magnus will return to Earth on STS-126.

Chamitoff will fly to the station on the STS-127 mission, targeted for winter 2008, the third and final flight for assembly of the Japanese Kibo lab. Wakata will return to Earth on STS-127. Chamitoff will return home on a later shuttle or Soyuz mission.

Expedition 16 backup crew members:

  • Fincke for Whitson
  • Sharipov for Malenchenko
  • ESA astronaut Frank DeWinne for Eyharts
  • NASA astronaut Army Lt. Col. Timothy L. Kopra for Reisman.

Expedition 17 backup crew members:

  • Cosmonaut and veteran station crew member Sergei Krikalev for Volkov
  • Cosmonaut Russian Air Force Col. Maxim V. Suraev for Kononenko
  • NASA astronaut Nicole P. Stott for Magnus.

Expedition 18 backup crew members:

  • NASA astronaut Dr. Michael R. Barratt for Fincke
  • Cosmonaut Russian Air Force Lt. Col. Yuri V. Lonchakov for Sharipov
  • JAXA astronaut Soichi Noguchi for Wakata
  • NASA astronaut Army Col. Timothy J. Creamer for Chamitoff.

Video of the prime crew members will air on NASA TV’s Video File. For NASA TV downlink, streaming video and scheduling information, visit:

http://www.nasa.gov/ntv For complete crew biographies, visit:


For more about upcoming space shuttle missions, visit: