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Record-setting astronaut to return to Earth tonight

5 Feb 2020, 18:52 UTC
Record-setting astronaut to return to Earth tonight
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After a record-setting 328 continuous days in space, NASA astronaut Christina Koch will return to Earth Thursday, 6 February, with her European and Russian counterparts Luca Parmitano and Aleksandr Skvortsov, respectively.
The trio will undock from the International Space Station aboard the Soyuz MS-13 spacecraft at 00:50 EST (05:50 UTC) before initiating a deorbit burn two and a half hours later ahead of a scheduled 04:12 EST (09:12 UTC) landing on the steppes of Kazakhstan.
Christina’s record-setting mission:
Christina Koch launched to the International Space Station aboard the Soyuz MS-12 launch vehicle on 14 March 2019 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.
At the time of launch, she was scheduled to perform a six-month mission, returning to Earth on the Soyuz MS-12 vehicle in early October 2019.
However, a variety of factors aligned to place NASA in the position of allowing one of its astronauts to remain aboard the International Space Station for close to one year.
Christina was the logical choice given her background and EVA/spacewalk training.
The decision, announced just one month after she began living and working aboard the Station for a few months, meant Christina would become the world-wide record holder for longest ...

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