NASA Television and the agency’s website are now broadcasting live coverage of the return to Earth of NASA astronaut Christina Koch, Soyuz Commander Alexander Skvortsov of Roscosmos and Luca Parmitano of ESA (European Space Agency). Their Soyuz MS-13 is expected to make its deorbit burn at 3:18 a.m. EST to set the spacecraft on its re-entry through Earth’s atmosphere for a landing in Kazakhstan at 4:12 a.m.
Koch’s extended mission will provide researchers the opportunity to observe effects of long-duration spaceflight on a woman as the agency plans to return to the Moon under the Artemis program and prepare for human exploration of Mars.
She shared 10 ways she will need to readjust back to life on Earth, including how her perspective has changed while living in space:
“Earth is alive, and I have witnessed its power and beauty from a special vantage point 250 miles above the surface. From the space station we see no borders, no boundaries – we are all part of one giant organism that breathes and adapts. I have been in awe of this perspective for almost a year now. Back on Earth I anticipate looking up and seeing the space station streak across the sky, wondering how my friends and colleagues are doing up there without me. For almost 20 years humans have continuously lived and worked in space and the mission continues.
“Of note, the Moon looks the same from orbit as it does from Earth. It is a common point of reference for us all and offers a common interest as we strive to return to its surface.”