NASA's Scott Kelly to attempt longest spaceflight ever by any US astronaut

Last Updated: Tue, Nov 27, 2012 08:00 hrs

Scott Kelly, an astronaut from NASA, will be manning an expedition in spring 2015 for one year at the International Space Station with Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko, it has been revealed.

The brother-in-law of former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords will launch into space in spring 2015 and spend 12 months at the International Space Station.

The veteran astronaut could set an out-of-this-world record by spending the most consecutive days in space of any American in a single mission.

Kelly, a native of West Orange, N.J., is the twin brother of Mark Kelly, himself a retired astronaut and the husband of former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. She stepped down last year after surviving a deadly shooting rampage outside of a Tucson grocery store in 2011.

NASA officials said Kelly and Kornienko will conduct research to help scientists better understand how space affects the human body.

"Their skills and previous experience aboard the space station align with the mission's requirements," the New York Daily News quoted William Gerstenmaier, a NASA official in Washington, D.C., as saying in a statement.

"The one-year increment will expand the bounds of how we live and work in space and will increase our knowledge ... as we prepare for future missions beyond low-Earth orbit," he said,

The pair will begin training next year, then launch from a Russian Soyuz spacecraft in Kazakhstan in spring 2015 and will return to Earth a year later.

According to CNN, international crews typically spend about six months on the International Space Station during each trip.

Kelly's potential 365 days in space won't be the longest single mission ever as that record is held by Russian Valery Polyakov, who spent 438 days from January 1994 to March 1995 but he would surpass American record-holder Mike Lopez-Alegria, who logged 215 days in space from 2006-07 on Expedition 14. (ANI)

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