On April 24, 2017, NASA Astronaut Peggy Whitson established the new record for the most time spent in space by an American astronaut. She’s spent more than 76 weeks of her life floating in microgravity! It’s not the first time in her career at NASA that Whitson has established new milestones: here are just a few.
First NASA Science Officer
Peggy Whitson was the named the first NASA Science Officer aboard the space station in 2002. The position was created to work with the United States research community to understand and meet the requirements and objectives of each space station experiment.
First Female to Command the Space Station… Twice
Whitson became the first female to command the space station during Expedition 16 in 2008. Then Whitson became the first female to command the station twice during her current mission on April 9, 2017.
First Female Chief of the Astronaut Office
In 2009, Whitson became the first female and first non-pilot to achieve the most senior position for active astronauts, Chief of the Astronaut Office.
Most Spacewalks for a Female
On March 30, 2017, Peggy Whitson broke the record for most spacewalks and most time spent spacewalking for female astronauts. Suni Williams had previously held the record at 7 spacewalks.
Most Time In Space By A NASA Astronaut
At 1:27 a.m. ET on April 24, Peggy Whitson set the new record for cumulative time spent in space by an American astronaut. Jeff Williams previously set the record in 2016.
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