On Sept. 21, the Russian Soyuz spacecraft MS-22 carried two Russian cosmonauts and one American astronaut on a six-month mission into space.
But on Dec. 14, damage to the spacecraft’s service module surface caused coolant to eject from the radiator, after which temperatures in several spaceships rose and stabilized in the mid-30s Celsius.
The damage could have been caused by a micrometeoroid or space debris impact.
However, it does not seem to be related to the Geminid meteor shower, because the direction of the damage does not coincide with the Geminid meteor shower.
In a recent conference call, the Russians said they are doing a thermal analysis of the spacecraft.
If it is no longer safe, Russia will consider advancing the launch of MS-23, originally scheduled for mid-March next year, to around Feb. 19 as a replacement.
According to the plan, neither the launch of MS-23 nor the return of MS-22 will carry cosmonauts.
Currently, the International Space Station (ISS) has a total of seven people, and if MS-22 is not available, there will be only one lifeboat left that can carry four people.