Orbital freighter launched from Baikonur

Russian freighter spacecraft Progress M-10M with supplies for the International Space Station has been successfully launched. It has 2.6 tons of cargo onboard, including flies and seeds for scientific research.

The spaceship blasted off on Wednesday from Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. It is expected to dock with the ISS in automatic mode on Friday.

The current crew will receive a fresh supply of oxygen and water, clothes, fresh food and presents from their families.

The living cargo is needed for a number of experiments. For example, the fruit flies will be used to study the speed of mutation in low gravity conditions.

Several species of bacteria and fungi will be exposed to radiation on the outer surface of the space station as part of research into the possibility of manned expeditions to other planets.

The seeds of dwarf tomatoes and wheat are needed for the ISS’ small greenhouse.

The launch was the second orbital cargo delivery by a Progress spacecraft this year.