Italian astronaut beats record of women's stay in space

(AGI) Rome, June 7 - Samantha Cristoforetti, the first Italianfemale astronaut and the 59th ever, made history on Sunday bybeating the record of women's permance in outer space. "AstroSamantha", as she is called, is a 38-year-old Captain ofthe Italian Air Force. On June 11, she will conclude themission after spending 199 days in outer space, topping the195-day record set in 2007 by Ohio-born Sunita Williams, 49.Williams, who followed part of Cristoforetti's training in theUnited States, still holds the record for total spacewalk time,with 50 hours and 40 minutes in 7 spacewalks. The

(AGI) Rome, June 7 - Samantha Cristoforetti, the first Italianfemale astronaut and the 59th ever, made history on Sunday bybeating the record of women's permance in outer space. "AstroSamantha", as she is called, is a 38-year-old Captain ofthe Italian Air Force. On June 11, she will conclude themission after spending 199 days in outer space, topping the195-day record set in 2007 by Ohio-born Sunita Williams, 49.Williams, who followed part of Cristoforetti's training in theUnited States, still holds the record for total spacewalk time,with 50 hours and 40 minutes in 7 spacewalks. The Milaneseastronaut, who was born and brought up in Male' in Val di Sole,near Trento, in northern Italy, set the record also thanks tothe delay in the spacecraft's re-entry to Earth, which wasscheduled for May 14, due to the failed launching andsubsequent docking at the International Space Station (ISS) ofthe Progress M-27M cargo, which disintegrated in the atmosphereand fell in the waters of the Pacific at the beginning of May.Samantha Cristoforetti already set the Italian record for thelongest consecutive permanence in space a few weeks ago,snatching it from Milanese Paolo Nespoli who remained in orbit178 days (26 November 2010 - 23 May 2011) during Expedition26/27. Sicilian astronaut Luca Parmitano is Italy's astronautwith the third-longest stay on the ISS with 166 days, 6 hoursand 19 minutes. He was also the first Italian to go on aspacewalk in July 2013. The Soyuz TMA-15M spacecraft that willbe carrying Samantha Cristoforetti, Russia's Anton Shkaplerovand the American Terry Virts, will land back on the Kazakhstansteppes at 3:43 p.m. (CET time; 7:43 p.m. Kazakhstan time) onThursday, June 11, near the city of Dzhezkazgan, south ofKaraganda. . .