||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (December 2008)|
|Mission name||Soyuz TMA-8
|Spacecraft mass||7,270 kg|
|Launch pad||LC-1, Baikonur Cosmodrome|
|Launch date||March 30, 2006
|Landing||September 29, 2006
|Mission duration||182 days|
|Orbital period||88.64 minutes|
|From left to right: Marcos Pontes, Jeffrey Williams, Pavel Vinogradov|
Soyuz TMA-8 was a transport mission for portions of the International Space Station (ISS) Expedition 13 crew. The flight delivered ISS Commander Pavel Vinogradov and ISS Flight Engineer Jeffrey Williams to the station to replace Expedition 12 crew members. Flight Engineer Marcos Pontes joined the TMA-8 crew for the ascent and docking with ISS, spent approximately seven days aboard the ISS conducting experiments, then returned to Earth with the outgoing members of Expedition 12 aboard Soyuz TMA-7. Vinogradov and Williams were joined on their return trip to Earth by Spaceflight Participant Anousheh Ansari who launched aboard Soyuz TMA-9 and spent approximately eight days aboard ISS conducting experiments for the European Space Agency.
|Position||Launching crew||Landing crew|
|Commander||Pavel Vinogradov, RKA
|Flight Engineer||Jeffrey Williams, NASA
|Spaceflight Participant||Marcos Pontes, AEB
|Anousheh Ansari, SA
Back-up crew 
|Commander||Fyodor Yurchikhin, RKA|
|Flight Engineer||Michael Fincke, NASA|
|Flight Engineer||Sergei Volkov, RKA|
Docking with ISS 
- Docked to ISS: April 1, 2006, 04:19 UTC (to nadir port of Zarya)
- Undocked from ISS: September 28, 2006, 21:53 UTC (from nadir port of Zarya)
Mission highlights 
29th manned flight to ISS (Flight 12S)
Soyuz TMA-8 is a Soyuz spacecraft which was launched on March 30, 2006 by a Soyuz-FG rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. Near the end of second stage burn, a communications blackout occurred at Moscow Mission Control. A satellite link was lost, but was restored about 10 minutes later. The crew was safe throughout the loss of communications.
The spacecraft carried two members of the Expedition 13 crew to the International Space Station, together with Marcos Pontes, the first Brazilian in space. The Brazilian government paid Russia approximately $20 million (USD) for Pontes' flight. They replaced the Expedition 12 crew, Commander William McArthur and Valery Ivanovich Tokarev. Together with the Expedition 12 crew, Marcos Pontes returned to Earth on board Soyuz TMA-7.
See also 
- NASA (2006-03-29). "New Station Crew Launches From Baikonur". National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Retrieved 2007-08-12.
- NASA (2006-01-05). "NASA Announces Next International Space Station Crew". NASA. Retrieved 2007-08-12.
- NASA (2006-03-31). "New Crew Docks With Space Station". NASA. Retrieved 2007-08-12.
- Delphine Thouvenot (2005). "Brazil's President In Moscow Signs Deal For Joint Space Mission". Space Daily. Retrieved October 30, 2007.
- NASA (2005-09-28). "Space Station Crew Back on Earth". NASA. Retrieved 2007-08-12.