Astronaut Peggy Whitson home safe after record stay aboard space station

Posted September 03, 2017

Astronaut and american Peggy Whitson after stis landing in Kazakhstan, on September 3, 2017.

M - Peggy Whitson, American astronaut, returned to Earth Saturday after a 288-day stay aboard the International Space Station, landing on the steppe of Kazakhstan with Soyuz MS-04 commander Fyodor Yurchikhin and flight engineer Jack Fischer, reports say.

Russia's Yurchikhin holds the record for spending the longest duration of time in space.

Whitson arrived to the International Space Station on November 17, 2016 and spent almost one year on the orbit.

Russian cosmonaut Fyodor Yurchikhin (C), USA astronauts Jack Fischer (R) and Peggy Whitson pose shortly after landing the Russian Soyuz MS-04 space capsule in a remote area outside the town of Dzhezkazgan (Zhezkazgan), in Kazakhstan, on September 3, 2017.

She has now accrued a total of 665 days in space - more than any American astronaut - over the course of her illustrious career during which she set multiple USA space records spanning a total of four spaceflights. She also owns the record for number of spacewalks for a woman astronaut.

Whitson, however, set multiple other records while in orbit. She is in eighth position on the list of endurance of astronauts, according to NASA. But Whitson said she will miss life on the space station. During her expeditions, she continually asked for more scientific research to do.

The most experienced astronaut in history said she's excited to eat pizza and use flushable toilets now that she's back on Earth.

Descending dramatically while hanging below a single big orange-and-white parachute the scorched Russian Soyuz vehicle fired its breaking rockets just moments before touchdown in Kazakhstan to cushion the crew for a gentle landing under beautifully sunny skies.

The goal, she added, "I regret the enchanting views and peaceful our Earth from this observation post".