NASA expedition 52
The astronauts launching to the ISS for Expedition 52. In order left to right, Paolo Nespoli of ESA, Sergey Ryazanskiy of Roscosmos, and Randy Bresnik of NASA. NASA

The International Space Station will double its occupancy Friday when three new crew members launch to the station. One of the three astronauts is from NASA, Randy Bresnik. The other two astronauts launching Friday are Roscosmos astronaut Sergey Ryazanskiy and European Space Agency astronaut Paolo Nespoli.

The rocket will launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 9:41 p.m. local time if all goes according to plan. But for those watching in the United States the launch will occur in the morning at 11:41 a.m. for those on the East Coast and 8:41 a.m. for those following along on the West Coast.

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The launch will be broadcasted live on NASA’s website as well as on Youtube and coverage will begin about an hour before launch. The trip up to the station will last about six hours at which time the astronauts will be greeted in the Rassvet module around 6 p.m. EDT. Coverage of the docking will begin 45 minutes prior, said NASA in a release.

The three will be greeted by NASA astronauts Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer along with Roscosmos astronaut Fyodor Yurchikhin. The hatches between the Soyuz and the station will open around 7:40 p.m. EDT. All six of the Expedition 52 members will work together to continue the research conducted on the station.

The Soyuz MS-05 was brought out and raised into launch position on the launch pad at the Baikonur Cosmodrome on Wednesday, according to NASA. Assuming everything goes according to plan the astronauts will be up orbiting space in time for the weekend.

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While not just anyone can fly up to the station to see what life in space is like, anyone can take a virtual tour. Google Street View released new images and a virtual tour of the ISS last week. If you look at the station on street view you can see all of the complex wires and equipment kept on board the station. ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet helped Google take the images for the tour and wrote a blog post about what life on the station is like. You can tour the station to see where the three astronauts launching Friday will be living by clicking here.

You can watch the launch and docking process live here: