Soyuz TMA-16

Soyuz TMA- 16 is a designation for a flight mission of the Russian Soyuz spacecraft to the International Space Station (ISS). As part of the ISS program, the flight is called ISS AF -20S. It was the 20th visit of a Soyuz spacecraft to the ISS and the 126th flight in Sojusprogramm.


Start crew

  • Maxim Viktorovich Surajew ( first space flight), Commander, ( Russia / Roskosmos )
  • Jeffrey Nels Williams ( third space flight), flight engineer, (USA / NASA)
  • Guy Laliberté ( first space flight), space tourist ( Canada / Space Adventures )

The third place in the space ship was originally intended for the Kazakh cosmonaut Aidyn Aimbetow. On June 4, however, Laliberté was announced as a space participants.

Backup crew

  • Alexander Alexandrovich Skvortsov ( first space flight), Commander, ( Russia / Roskosmos )
  • Shannon Walker ( first space flight ), aircraft engineer, (USA / NASA)
  • Barbara Barrett ( first space flight), space tourist, (USA / Space Adventures )

Return crew

  • Maxim Viktorovich Surajew, Commander
  • Jeffrey Nels Williams, Flight Engineer

Mission overview

On September 30, 2009 at 7:14 UTC launched a Soyuz -FG rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome the spacecraft Soyuz TMA -16 to the ISS and docked two days later automatically at the rear docking port of the Zvezda module. The mission brought two crew members of the ISS Expedition 21 and 22, and the space tourists Guy Laliberté to the International Space Station. The Soyuz spacecraft served as second rescue capsule next Soyuz TMA -15 for since May 29, 2009 had grown to six people long-term occupation. This three Soyuz spaceships were coupled simultaneously to the ISS for the first time. Guy Laliberté returned after eleven days in space with the Soyuz TMA -14 returns to Earth.

On 21 January 2010 Soyuz TMA -16 was detached and transferred within 21 minutes to Poisk module, to make way for Progress M- 04M.

On March 18, 2010 8:03 UTC the spacecraft docked after almost half year stay from Maxim Surajew and Jeffrey Williams of the ISS. After about two and a half hours, the braking engines were fired for 4 minutes and 14 seconds. The crew of Soyuz TMA -16 capsule landed after a normal descent 60 km from Arkalyk to 11:24 UTC in the Kazakh steppe.