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How Long Are The Astronauts Going To Be In Space (And Why)?

Exact Answer: Nearly 6 Months

Astronauts are the people sent to space for research and other exploratory work. They are trained and equipped before being deployed into the International Space Station. Astronauts are deployed into the space station by a human spaceflight program where they can serve in the position of a commander or a crew member in the course of their duty.

The word astronaut is a summation of two Greek words, “astron” meaning star and “nautes” meaning sailor. Thus, the literal meaning of astronaut would be a star sailor. Russian astronauts are called cosmonauts while those of China are called taikonauts.

How Long Are The Astronauts Going To Be In Space?

Space MissionPeriod of Stay
Crew Dragon Demo 262 Days
SpaceX Crew 126 Days
SpaceX Crew 2110 Days
SpaceX Crew 3174 Days
SpaceX Crew 490 to 120 Days

There have been several manned missions to space. Many space missions are currently in progress and so there are astronauts from various nations in the International Space Station currently. Moreover, many such manned space missions from various space organizations are in their planning phase and are going to be executed in the next couple of years.

SpaceX Crew 2 was launched on the 23rd of April in 2021 from the Kennedy Space Center LC-39A. The Astronauts on the mission were Shane Kimbrough, K. Megan, Akihiko Hoshide, and Thomas Pesquet. The mission ended on 9th November in 2021 with its landing in the Gulf of Mexico with the help of GO Navigator. Thus, the astronauts were for 110 Days.

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SpaceX Crew 3 was launched on the 11th of November in 2021 and was the third operational flight of a Crew Dragon spacecraft. The astronauts in this mission were Raja Cheri, Thomas Marshburn, Matthias Maurer, and Kayla Barron. The mission is currently in progress as of January 2022. It is supposed to land in the Atlantic Ocean and last for 166 days.

SpaceX Crew 4 is a space program currently in its planning phase and it will be the fourth manned operational flight of the Crew Dragon spacecraft. It is planned to be launched on the 15th of April in 2022 from the Falcon 9 Blick 5 and landed at the end of the same year in the Atlantic Ocean.

Why Are The Astronauts Going To Be In Space For So Long?

Astronauts are sent to space for various exploratory and research purposes. These people remain busy with their work in the space station. They have a plethora of work to do which is why they are sent to the space on a budget of billions of dollars.

The astronauts have to conduct various work and operate several science experiments while onboard the space station. They have to study the stars and the Earth, build and repair the International Space Station (ISS). They also study how to live, work and conduct daily life activities in the absence of gravity.

Keeping the ISS in good shape is one of the prime responsibilities of the astronauts. They are responsible to clean it and check the well functioning of its equipment. If any of the equipment of the ISS is not functioning well, the astronauts are liable to repair it or replace it. The maintenance of the space station is crucial for the effective functioning of the research.

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The astronauts may also have to regularly check the exteriors of the space station and maintain them accordingly. They would be required to use the spacesuit to take a spacewalk around the ISS for that purpose. It might be a dangerous situation but the view offered in such a situation is terrific.

Conclusion

The astronauts generally remain in space for nearly 6 months. The longest period for which any astronaut was in space was at about 215 days. The astronaut to accomplish this tremendous feat was NASA astronaut Mike Lopez Alegria.

The SpaceX Crew 1 and the SpaceX Crew 2 lasted for 26 days and 110 days respectively. On the other hand, the SpaceX Crew 3 is an ongoing mission and the astronauts are expected to be in space for 174 days. The SpaceX Crew 4 is a mission in planning mode and the astronauts are expected to last for about 90 to 120 days.

References

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/0094576594900647
  2. https://link.springer.com/book/10.1057/9781137025296
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