Three astronauts who were aboard the International Space Station have successfully returned to Earth after six-months in low Earth orbit.
NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy, as well as Roscosmos’ Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Vagner touched down in Kazakstan early on Thursday, 22 October.
All three astronauts had made the mission up to the station in April and have spent a total of 196 days in orbit.
Finally home 😎@Astro_SEAL and his crewmates are all smiles after having exited the Soyuz spacecraft. They will be on their way home soon, having completed their mission aboard the @Space_Station: pic.twitter.com/hGHtY8mqBe
— NASA (@NASA) October 22, 2020
According to NASA and Roscosmos, upon landing, they had a brief medical check-up and were taken to the nearest town to start their journeys back to their respective homes.
This team were not only remarkable for their time in space but also because they were the first crew to take-off and return during the coronavirus pandemic. This meant extra precautions had to be put in place to make sure they did not take the virus to space with them.
Those who were in the rescue and recovery team were tested for the virus and the entire team was made up of significantly less people than usual.
They have been replaced at the station by NASA’s Kate Rubins and Roscosmos’ Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov, who will also be staying for six months.