Record breaking astronaut Peggy Whitson takes command of ISS for second time

NASA’s Peggy Whitson has assumed command of the International Space Station for a record second time. The 57-year-old will have spent more time in space than any other US astronaut on 24 April - surpassing the current record of 534 days held by NASA’s Jeff Williams. Ms Whitson, who began her second stint in charge of the $100bn station on Sunday, already holds records for the most time spent in space by a woman and for the most time spent spacewalking by a woman.

She will set another record at this moment. She’s been doing this many times throughout the past few weeks. She becomes the first two-time female commander of the International Space Station.

The departing Mr Kimbrough said during the change of command ceremony

US astronaut Commander Shane Kimbrough handed over command to Ms Whitson, before he and Russian flight engineers Sergey Ryzhikov and Andrey Borisenko sealed off their Soyuz MS-02 spacecraft ahead of their departure from the orbiting outpost. NASA’s Jack Fischer and Fyodor Yurchikhin of Russian space agency Roscosmos are due to join Ms Whitson on 20 April at the station - a multinational project overseen by the two agencies 250 miles above Earth.The agencies agreed last week to extend Ms Whitson’s mission by three months to fill in as the new crew’s third member.