Ultimate absentee ballot: US astronaut votes from space station

25 Octobre, 2020, 19:39 | Auteur: Therese Cote
  • 22 2020 by NASA shows International Space Station crew member Kate Rubins pointing to a sign reading

Russian cosmonaut Anatoly Ivanishin gets a medical check shortly after landing in a remote area outside the town of Dzhezkazgan in Kazakhstan on Thursday.

Their journey back to Earth from the International Space Station (ISS), in orbit around 400 kilometers (roughly 250 miles) above the planet, took about three hours and 20 minutes.

Cassidy will be returning to Houston, Texas, aboard a NASA plane and the other two crew members will fly to Star City, Russia on a Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center aircraft flight.

The crew launched just weeks after the World Health Organization declared Covid-19 as a pandemic, making them the first crew to launch to space under such conditions.

As part of additional precautions due to coronavirus, the rescue team members meeting the crew were tested for the virus and the number of people involved in the recovery effort was limited.

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Rubins arrived in orbit for her second spaceflight on October 14 and will remain on the space station for about six and a half months. "I voted today", crew member Kate Rubins, who began a six-month stint from the orbiting station last week, said on the USA space agency NASA's Twitter account.

Cassidy, returning from his third space mission, has now spent a total of 378 days in space, the fifth highest among U.S. astronauts.

The Soyuz MS-16 spacecraft is seen as it lands in Kazakhstan with Expedition 63 crew. The final spacewalk was the 10th for both astronauts, making them two of only four only USA astronauts to complete 10 spacewalks.

It's a similar story now for NASA astronaut Rubins, who will be the only NASA astronaut on board the station after Cassidy's departure until the arrival of the SpaceX Crew-1 mission carrying NASA astronauts Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover and Shannon Walker, and Soichi Noguchi of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency. Crew-1 will be the first long-duration mission to fly as part of NASA's Commercial Crew Program and mark the return of America's capability to regularly launch astronauts from US soil.

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