Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano returned to Earth after 201 days spent on the ISS, the International Space Station that orbits at an altitude of 498 kilometers.
“There’s no place like home! @Astro_Christina, Alexander Skvortsov & @astro_luca landed safely back on Earth at 4:12am ET after a mission aboard the @Space_Station”. It is with these words that NASA – the Government Agency in charge of the space program of the United States of America – first greeted the return to Earth of the Italian astronaut Luca Parmitano. Together with his NASA colleague Christina Koch and Russian cosmonaut Alexander Skvortsov, Parmitano landed in the steppe of Kazakhstan at 4.12 a.m. this morning (10.43 a.m. Italian time). The three astronauts “went home” on board a Soyuz shuttle that left the International Space Station at 6.49 am. The capsule landed in a vertical position and the three astronauts were helped to get out of the rescue teams. Luca Parmitano, third to get off the Soyuz, greeted those present and immediately appeared smiling and in good health.
Parmitano has returned to Earth: the Beyond mission is over.
With the return of Parmitano, Skvortsov and Koch officially ends the international mission Beyond which started last July 20th. During the 201 days spent aboard the ISS 408 kilometres from Earth, Parmitano – the first Italian to act as commander of the International Space Station – led a team of astronauts engaged in over 50 experiments. The tests involved very different disciplines – from human physiology to technological demonstrations, from biological experiments to robotic experiments – to better understand the biological processes and mechanisms of adaptation of living organisms under extreme conditions. “Thanks to the results of these experiments – said Parmitano on the eve of the mission – we would like to be able to help, on Earth, those with motor, physical or neurological problems. But understanding how the brain perceives its orientation in space will allow us to create more and more refined space environments in the future“. Once back on Earth, Parmitano will now have to undergo a path of physiotherapy and motor re-education to recover the muscle tone lost in space and “readapt” to the conditions of life on our Planet.
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