CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — The Latest on NASA space champ Peggy Whitson returning to Earth (all times local):
All three returning space travelers are out of their capsule and relaxing in chairs on the steppes of Kazakhstan.
NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson was the last to be carried from the Russian Soyuz spacecraft. She was immediately given a pair of sunglasses to put on. Medical personnel took her pulse, standard practice. She then received a bouquet of flowers with the greeting, “Welcome back, Peggy.”
Whitson spent 288 days in space on this mission, boosting her all-time tally to 665 days aloft. That’s a record for NASA and a world record for women. She smiled for the cameras, but sat pretty much motionless. This was her third spaceflight.
U.S. astronaut Jack Fischer, meanwhile, chatted on a phone following Saturday night’s touchdown. He spent 136 days in orbit. Returning Russian cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin has logged even more time in orbit: 673 days over five missions. Both men flew to the International Space Station in April.
All three briefly held hands for a photo op, before being carried one by one in their chairs to the medical tent.
NASA all-time space champ Peggy Whitson is back on Earth after a record-breaking flight.
Whitson and two other astronauts landed in Kazakhstan late Saturday, U.S. time. Their Russian Soyuz capsule undocked from the International Space Station just hours earlier.
Altogether, Whitson has spent 665 days in orbit, more than any other American. Her just-concluded mission lasted 288 days. She became the world’s oldest spacewoman and most experienced female spacewalker following her launch last November. She also was the first woman to command the space station twice. This was her third flight.
Returning Russian cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin has logged even more time in orbit: 673 days over five missions. Also back on solid ground is U.S. astronaut Jack Fischer after 136 days aloft. The men flew up in April.
NASA space champ Peggy Whitson is on her way back to Earth to wrap up a record-breaking flight.
Whitson left the International Space Station on Saturday, along with another American and a Russian. Their Soyuz capsule is due to land in Kazakhstan late Saturday, U.S. time.
Altogether, Whitson has spent 665 days off the planet, more than any other American — also more than any other woman. This trip — her third — lasted 288 days.
She became the world’s oldest spacewoman, at age 57, and the most experienced female spacewalker, with 10, following her launch last November.
Returning cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin has logged even more time in orbit: 673 days over five missions. Also headed home is Jack Fischer, with 136 days aloft. The men flew up in April.