If the mission proves successful, India will join an elite group of only three countries - Russia, US and China - which have the capability to launch a manned mission to outer space. As magical as space is, low Earth orbit is a risky place, and even the ISS isn't immune to dangers like cosmic radiation or micro-meteorite impacts. Early Thursday, Feustel will strap into another Soyuz - not the one where the hole was found - with NASA's Ricky Arnold and cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev for the ride home to Earth.
NASA's statement comes after Roscosmos general director Dmitry Rogozin said the investigation has ruled out a manufacturing defect.
After saying farewell to their Expedition 56 crewmates - NASA astronaut Serena M. Auñón-Chancellor, German astronaut Alexander Gerst and Russian cosmonaut Sergey Prokopyev - the departing trio will board the Soyuz MS-08 spacecraft and close the hatch at 12:55 a.m. EDT (0455 GMT).
The odd tale started on August 29 with the discovery of a small hole in a Soyuz craft attached to the ISS.
However, NASA added, "This conclusion does not necessarily mean the hole was created intentionally or with mal-intent", as some media outlets interpreted Rogozin's remarks as suggesting.
U.S. Senate heads to final vote on Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination
Annie Daines is set to marry Brad Moss in Montana Saturday, the same day of the final Kavanaugh vote now slated for about 5 p.m. The White House hoped the last-minute words from Mr Kavanaugh would ease lingering anxieties with the undecided senators.
The Russian daily Kommersant reported that an investigation at home was probing the possibility that USA astronauts deliberately drilled the hole in order to get a sick colleague sent back home - something Russian officials later denied.
The International Space Station (ISS) is a space station, or a habitable artificial satellite, in low Earth orbit.
The landing came with Russian and United States officials investigating the appearance of a mysterious hole in a Russian space craft docked at the orbiting station.
A Russian space capsule with three men onboard has safely landed in a barren steppe in Kazakhstan after a six-month mission aboard the International Space Station.
One of them made a music video.