Over the past several days we have grown from an Early Team of 30 to a Main Team of 58 members. This surge was facilitated by a private charter on 11 January, which brought in most of the new crew, as well as the 12 January arrival of an Antonov-124 aircraft carrying our THOR 5 spacecraft, equipment and a handful of additional team members. A winter landing in Baikonur is not an experience to be taken lightly, as a plume of snow rises from behind the recently touched-down aircraft. We arrived at the airfield in the afternoon to meet the Antonov and greet our newcomers. Most of the team spent the rest of the day at the airfield unloading our spacecraft (which endured the journey snug in its custom container) and three Sea-Land containers containing equipment and supplies for the campaign. All containers were loaded onto a train for the trip to the processing facility. The members who arrived with the Antonov were quickly ushered back to our hotel for some much-needed rest, as were those of us who were needed very early the next morning for the offload at the facility. The offload of the spacecraft and Sea-Land containers at the processing facility (Building 92A-50) began at 1 a.m. the following day. This task was expeditiously completed in just three hours by the skilled crews of Khrunichev and Orbital. The Sea-Land containers were then moved into Hall 103 for storage and unpacking. The spacecraft container was left in Integration Hall 101, where it arrived, so that it and its valuable THOR 5 payload could slowly be brought up to room temperature. This is done to ensure that the spacecraft does not endure any unneeded thermal shock or condensation. With the spacecraft resting comfortably after its long journey it was time for the rest of us to sleep, as the next day we would undertake the process of carefully removing it from its container. [img]http://www.ilslaunch.com/assets/Images/Media/Thor-5/entry3a.jpg[/img] [img]http://www.ilslaunch.com/assets/Images/Media/Thor-5/entry3b.jpg[/img]

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