Recently we had the 15 year anniversary of Expedition 1 of the ISS. That particular crew launched in a Soyuz (TM-31) and returned on a Space Shuttle (Discovery, STS-102), which I found a remarkable aspect for a space mission!

Which led me to wonder who else has returned to Earth in a different type of vehicle than the one in which they launched? After a little searching around I found that ISS Expedition 6 launched on a Space Shuttle (Endeavour, STS-113) and returned in a Soyuz (Soyuz TMA-1), but my quick superficial search didn't uncover anyone else. I thus tallied a total of six people from trips to the ISS.

The only other missions I found were Shuttle trips to Mir. For example it looks like STS-71 (Atlantis) picked up three Russian cosmonauts who had launched on Soyuz TM-21, and dropped off two at Mir to return on Soyuz TM-21. There are probably more, but I had no easy way of searching. So if anyone has an easy way to extract that information, maybe we can compile the full list? I've collected the ones I have found so far in a comment below.

  • $\begingroup$ I don't have ready access to Mir data, but my quick check of the ISS crew rotations indicates that you got all the dissimilar vehicles to and from it. $\endgroup$ Commented Nov 4, 2016 at 1:33
  • $\begingroup$ Do different models of Soyuz count? $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 29, 2017 at 15:59
  • $\begingroup$ related question history.stackexchange.com/questions/51171/… $\endgroup$
    – JeffUK
    Commented Apr 2, 2020 at 8:54

1 Answer 1


Here is the list of people (11) I have found so far:

Norman Thagard,       Soyuz TM-21,   Mir,  STS-71
Gennady Strekalov,    Soyuz TM-21,   Mir,  STS-71
Vladimir Dezhurov,    Soyuz TM-21,   Mir,  STS-71

Anatoly Solovyev,     STS-71,        Mir,  Soyuz TM-21
Nikolai Budarin,      STS-71,        Mir,  Soyuz TM-21

William M. Shepherd,  Soyuz TM-31,   ISS,  STS-102
Sergei Krikalev,      Soyuz TM-31,   ISS,  STS-102
Yuri Gidzenko,        Soyuz TM-31,   ISS,  STS-102

Kenneth D. Bowersox,  STS-113,       ISS,  Soyuz TMA-1
Donald R. Pettit,     STS-113,       ISS,  Soyuz TMA-1
Nikolai Budarin,      STS-113,       ISS,  Soyuz TMA-1
  • $\begingroup$ Note that Bowersox, Pettit and Budarin were supposed to return aboard a Shuttle but the Columbia accident took place during their mission and the Shuttle was grounded. $\endgroup$
    – GordonD
    Commented May 9, 2021 at 9:47

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