Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield will be returning to space on December 19th. Hadfield, an experienced space traveler, is scheduled to blast off aboard a Russian Soyuz spacecraft enroute to the International Space Station.
The launch will be taking place at Russia’s Cosmodome which is located in Kazakhstan. The trip from Earth to the space station is sure to be an arduous one as the voyage will take about two days to complete.
Hadfield has plenty of experience when it comes to space travel. He’s already participated in two previous voyages. In 1995 he took part in a mission in which he earned the distinction of becoming the first Canadian to operate the Canadarm in space. Then during another mission in 2001 Hadfield became the first Canadian astronaut to make a spacewalk.
Hadfield, 53, has been training for this important mission for a period of four years. The Canadian astronaut will be a temporary resident of the station for a total of six months. During his time in space Hadfield, along with his fellow crew members, will be busy operating the Canadarm, completing space walks, and conducting some 130 scientific experiments. Besides Hadfield the rest of the space station crew consists two American and three Russian astronauts.
For Canadians Hadfield’s latest mission is particularly noteworthy because during the second half of his stay the Canuck astronaut will have the honor of assuming command of the $150 billion space station. Needless to say being in charge of the station is no small feat and serves as a testament to Hadfield’s experience, knowledge, and capability.