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Soyuz craft successfully docks with space station for 6-month mission

The Soyuz space rocket, which blasted off from Kazakhstan on Monday, has successfully docked with the International Space Station.

The multi-national team of Russian, Japanese and American astronauts have joined the current ISS crew – American Jeff Williams and Russian Maxim Surayev, who have been there for three weeks.

Almost 40 science experiments will be carried out during the trio's near six-month mission.

Part of the research is to help prepare teams for long-distance space missions, such as the effect on astronauts of having to endure a special diet.

Although the crew will be spending Christmas in space, the good news is that they will get to celebrate New Year’s 16 times.

Extended accelerated video of the Soyuz docking process