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Soyuz crew endures severe G-forces on re-entry

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  • Soyuz capsule lands hundreds of kilometers off-target
  • Capsule was carrying South Korea's first astronaut
  • Landing is second time Soyuz capsule has gone awry
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MOSCOW, Russia (CNN) -- Russian space officials say the crew of the Soyuz space ship is resting after a rough ride back to Earth.

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A South Korean bioengineer was one of three people on board the Soyuz capsule.

The craft carrying South Korea's first astronaut landed in northern Kazakhstan on Saturday, 260 miles (418 kilometers) off its mark, they said.

Mission Control spokesman Valery Lyndin said the condition of the crew -- South Korean bioengineer Yi So-yeon, American astronaut Peggy Whitson and Russian flight engineer Yuri Malenchenko -- was satisfactory, though the three had been subjected to severe G-forces during the re-entry.

Search helicopters took 25 minutes to find the capsule and determine that the crew was unharmed.

Officials said the craft followed a very steep trajectory that subjects the crew to gravitational forces of up to 10 times those on Earth.

Interfax reported that the spacecraft's landing was rough.

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This is not the first time a spacecraft veered from its planned trajectory during landing.

In October, the Soyuz capsule landed 70 kilometers from the planned area because of a damaged control cable. The capsule was carrying two Russian cosmonauts and the first Malaysian astronaut. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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