The Sift Here’s what we’re Sifting today

Astronaut returns after historic marathon mission

by Mickey McLean
Posted 2/07/20, 10:02 am

After traveling 139 million miles in space for more than 10 months, Christina Koch is back home. The NASA astronaut and two of her International Space Station crewmates, Luca Parmitano of the European Space Agency and Russian cosmonaut Alexander Skvortsov, touched down in their Soyuz capsule southeast of Dzhezkazgan, Kazakhstan, on Thursday.

What did NASA learn from the mission? Koch’s first flight into space was the longest ever by a woman, and it gives researchers the chance to observe the effects of a long-duration mission on the female body. NASA plans such missions in a return to the moon and eventually to Mars.

Dig deeper: From the WORLD archives, read Julie Borg’s report on a laser technology that could dramatically reduce the travel time to Mars.

Read more from The Sift Sign up for The Sift email
Mickey McLean

Mickey is executive editor of WORLD Digital.

Read more from this writer