KAZAKHSTAN – The next time American astronaut Scott Kelly rides the rocket into space, he won’t be coming home for at least a year.
NASA plans to send Kelly along with Russia’s Mikhail Kornienko to the International Space Station for a year-long mission beginning in 2015.
The plan is to find out the effect on the human body of long periods in space.
This is Kelly aboard the ISS in December 2010. He spent Thanksgiving and Christmas in space that year. He’ll be doing the same next time around. And, if all goes as planned, he’ll set the record for the longest space flight by an American astronaut.
Right now, that’s 215 days. But the Russians hold the all-time record with 438 days in space.
By the way, Kelly is the twin brother of retired shuttle commander Mark Kelly who is married to former congresswoman Gabriel Giffords.