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Space station trio gets warm reception

Kate Rubins' return
NASA astronaut Kate Rubins is all smiles as she is carried from the Soyuz landing site to a medical tent shortly after touchdown. The Soyuz sits in the background of the picture. (Credit: Bill Ingalls / NASA)

Just a week after a fresh trio of spacefliers moved into the International Space Station, three other crew members returned to Earth tonight, closing out a 115-day stay in orbit.

NASA biologist-astronaut Kate Rubins, Russia’s Anatoly Ivanishin and Japan’s Takuya Onishi touched down safely in their Russian Soyuz capsule at 8:58 p.m. PT today (9:58 a.m. local time Oct. 30) in the steppes of Kazakhstan.

A Russian-led recovery team hustled the crew out of the Soyuz amid near-freezing temperatures. All were reported in good health.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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