Cosmonaut Shatters Major Space Record

After more than 878 days, or nearly 2.5 years, in orbit, a Russian cosmonaut set a new record on Sunday.

According to Roscosmos, Russia’s space program, Oleg Kononenko surpassed his colleague Gennady Padalka’s record as of 0830 GMT. Before his retirement in 2017, Padalka completed five space trips, clocking 878 days, 11 hours, 29 minutes, and 48 seconds.

On his fifth space journey, 59-year-old Kononenko shattered the record while in an orbit 263 miles (423 km) from Earth. In an interview with the state news agency Tass from the International Space Station (ISS), he stated he flies into space to do his favorite thing, not to set records.

He will have spent 1,110 days in orbit by the time his mission concludes in late September.

In April 2008, he completed a 200-day space mission.

Padalka joined the group chosen for the ISS program when he was 34 years old and began training to become a cosmonaut. He began his space career as an engineer, according to the European Space Agency.

The cosmonaut says he exercised frequently to combat the “insidious” consequences of weightlessness on his body. According to him, he did not feel deprived or alone.
He claimed that technological advancements had prepared for each of his five space journeys, which had taken place over sixteen years, more challenging.

Padalka said a cosmonaut’s job is getting more and more intricate. Complexity is increasing in the systems and the experiments, and getting ready is still challenging.

Since Russia invaded Ukraine, Washington and Moscow have continued to cooperate closely on very few international programs, but the International Space Station stands apart. Roscosmos and NASA announced in December that their cross-flight program would continue until 2025.

Despite being Russia’s national pride for so long, the credibility of the country’s space program has lately been called into question. The Russian section of the International Space Station leaked coolant for the third time in less than a year in October, adding fuel to the fire for what experts have called a “beleaguered” space sector that has been reeling from years of inadequate financing, project failures, and corruption scandals.