Astronaut and engineer Christina Koch celebrated 319 days in space aboard the International Space Station on Tuesday, as she continues to extend her record for longest consecutive spaceflight by a woman in NASA history.
Koch, who will finally return to Earth on February 6, officially broke the record at the end of December. With 289 consecutive days in space, she broke former space station commander Peggy Whitson’s record of 288. Whitson currently holds the record for all astronauts in total days spent in space with 665 days. The longest consecutive spaceflight for NASA belongs to Scott Kelly with 340 days in space, while the international record is 15 months achieved by a Russian cosmonaut in the 1990s.
NASA has been studying the effects of extended spaceflights for Koch’s current mission in an effort to better understand conditions for future deep space exploration to the moon and Mars.