Space Station Trio Lands After 199 Days in Orbit

A NASA astronaut, a Russian cosmonaut and a record-setting Italian spaceflier left the International Space Station and landed back on Thursday after spending a longer-than-expected 199 days in orbit, NBC News reported. NASA's Terry Virts, Russia's Anton Shkaplerov and Italy's Samantha Cristoforetti sailed away in a Russian Soyuz space capsule right on time, at 6:20 a.m. ET, as part of a regular crew changeover. They touched down amid the steppes of Kazakhstan at 9:44 a.m. ET. "It was a textbook homecoming," NASA commentator Rob Navias said. The spacefliers were taken to a medical tent for checkups, and within days they'll be back in their respective homes.

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