ISS crew lands safely in Kazakhstan after 188 days in space
Three crew members from the International Space Station (ISS) landed in Kazakhstan on Tuesday after 188 days in space, during which they orbited Earth more than 3,000 times and traveled almost 79.8 million miles.
Expedition 39 Commander Koichi Wakata of the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, Flight Engineer Rick Mastracchio of NASA and Soyuz commander Mikhail Tyurin of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) touched down southeast of the remote town of Dzhezkazgan in Kazakhstan at 9:58 p.m. EDT (7:58 a.m., May 14, in Dzhezkazgan).
During Expedition 39, the crew participated in a variety of research, including a human immune system activation and suppression study and a protein crystal growth research study looking for proteins responsible for Huntington's disease and other neurodegenerative conditions.
The crew also installed a new plant growth chamber designed to expand in-orbit food production capabilities.
Mastracchio, Tyurin and Wakata arrived at the station Nov. 7 bearing the torch used to light the Olympic flame at Fisht Stadium in Sochi, Russia, which marked the start of the 2014 Winter Games in February.
During his time on the orbiting complex, Mastracchio ventured outside the confines of the space station for three contingency spacewalks. The first two were to remove and replace a faulty cooling pump, and the third to remove and replace a failed backup computer relay box.
(Posted on 14-05-2014)