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NASA’s four-person Crew-4 mission splashes down safely off Florida coast

The four astronauts of NASA’s Crew-4 mission have returned from the International Space Station and splashed down safely off the coast of Florida. The crew of NASA astronauts Bob Hines, Kjell Lindgren, and Jessica Watkins, plus European Space Agency astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti, traveled on a SpaceX Dragon craft that splashed down at 4:55 p.m. ET on Friday, October 14.

The crew launched for the space station in April this year, working in orbit for almost six months before handing over duties to the recently launched Crew-5. Following splashdown, the four were taken to NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston.

The splashdown of the SpaceX Crew Dragon Freedom spacecraft.
The SpaceX Crew Dragon Freedom spacecraft is seen as it lands with NASA astronauts Kjell Lindgren, Robert Hines, Jessica Watkins, and ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti aboard in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Jacksonville, Florida, Friday, Oct. 14, 2022. NASA/Bill Ingalls

“Welcome home Crew-4! This international crew has spent nearly six months on the International Space Station conducting science for the benefit of all. Their work aboard the orbiting laboratory will help prepare future explorers for future space missions,” said NASA Administrator Bill Nelson in a statement. “Working and living on the space station is the opportunity of a lifetime, but it also requires these explorers to make sacrifices, especially time away from loved ones. Kjell, Bob, Jessica, and Samantha, thank you for your contributions over the past six months to science, innovation, and discovery!”

Some of the work done by the crew during their stay on the space station includes performing spacewalks to maintain and upgrade the station, as well as working on scientific research. These projectors included working on human health issues like researching improvements to astronaut diets and testing their hearing, as well as seeing the effects of microgravity conditions on aging, plus research into technologies such as working on a concrete-like material made from lunar soil and looking at how fuels burn in microgravity.

With the four Crew-4 members returned to Earth, the current crew on the ISS includes the four Crew-5 members, plus two Russian cosmonauts and one more NASA astronaut who arrived at the space station in a Soyuz MS-22 spacecraft last month.

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