Samantha Cristoforetti is all smiles on her return to Earth. I enjoyed following her activities during her stay aboard the ISS.
ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti, NASA astronaut Terry Virts and Russian commander Anton Shkaplerov landed safely on 11 June 2015 in the Kazakh steppe after a three-hour ride in their Soyuz spacecraft. They left the International Space Station at 10:20 GMT at the end of their six-month stay on the research complex.
Terry Virtz, Anton Shkaplerov, and Samantha Cristoforetti are returning after more than six months onboard the International Space Station where they served as members of the Expedition 42 and 43 crews.
Copyright ESA–S. Corvaja, 2015
ESA astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti posted this aptly titled photograph on social media with the comment: “An aurora in the distance and the Space Station bathed in moonlight.”
In addition to being a valuable member of the Expedition 43 crew and the six-month Futura mission, Samantha can count photography among her many talents.
You can see more of her photos on Samantha’s Flickr page.
Follow Samantha at samanthacristoforetti.esa.int
Here is a replay of yesterday’s beautiful Futura launch as the Soyuz TMA-15M left from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to the International Space Station.
Terry Virts of NASA, Anton Shkaplerov of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and Samantha Cristoforetti of the European Space Agency join Expedition 42 Commander Barry “Butch” Wilmore of NASA and Alexander Samoukutyaev and Elena Serova of Roscosmos.
Among the investigations during the mission involves “Space Headaches” which are often caused by intracranial pressure change. The goal is to come up with effective counter measures. Scientists will use biologic samples to determine if immune system impairment increases the risk of infection or poses a health risk aboard the ISS and likely other long duration missions.
The Futura mission launches in just hours as launch preparations draw to a close and ESA’s Samantha Cristoforetti, Roscosmos’ Anton Shkaplerov and NASA’S Terry Virts board the Soyuz TMA-15M for launch to the International Space Station. One launched, the 274 tonnes of rocket propellant will get the crew at the station in just six hours.
Launch site: Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan
Launch time: 21:01 GMT – 23 November 2014
A very nice launch and all is well upon reaching orbit.
Arrival: 24 November at 02:30
Watch this launch LIVE at ESA– coverage begins at 20:00 GMT
I have been following ESA’s Italian astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti and you can too: samanthacristoforetti.esa.int.