Best bits from returned astronaut’s space station mission

SpaceX’s Crew-4 astronauts returned safely to Earth on Friday after a six-month stint living and working aboard the International Space Station.

One of those astronauts was Samantha Cristoforetti. The Italian space traveler — on her second orbital mission — shared moments from the adventure with her more than one million Twitter followers and 780,000 TikTok fans, posting photos and videos showing life aboard the orbital outpost, along with plenty of stunning imagery of Earth 250 miles below.

Here’s a selection of Cristoforetti’s tweets posted during her half-year space mission.

First, a quick review of the trip up and the first few days in space:

Back on the International @Space_Station (and TikTok)

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) May 6, 2022

A breathtaking view of the moon:

The ethereal beauty of the Moon… the last sliver of the waning crescent rising above the colors of the imminent sunrise. #Moon #MissionMinerva

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) May 30, 2022

“Cycling” in space:

Happy #WorldBicycleDay from the International @Space_Station! #MissionMinerva #SpaceTok

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) June 3, 2022

Taking time out to replicate a moment from Gravity:

One of my biggest regrets from my year in space was watching #GravityMovie and having @AstroSamantha float by the screen after her working out and not being quick enough to the camera. Here’s the original photo fail. So disappointed then, but all is good now. Thank you, Samantha!

— Scott Kelly (@StationCDRKelly) June 19, 2022

“Moroccan culture is known for its impressive art and architecture,” says Cristoforetti. “No wonder that it looks like a real piece of EarthArt from space too!”

Moroccan culture is known for its impressive art and architecture. No wonder that it looks like a real piece of #EarthArt from space too! #MissionMinerva #Morocco #Maroc #AtlasMountains

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) July 8, 2022

Here’s how astronauts on the station capture all of those amazing Earth shots:

How to take pictures in #space! ? #worf #SpaceTok #MissionMinerva @esa @esaspaceflight

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) July 13, 2022

Getting ready for bed on the ISS:

Getting ready for bed! ? #BedtimeRoutine #SpaceToc #MissionMinerva @Space_Station @esa @esaspaceflight

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) July 15, 2022

Here’s an entertaining effort by the Crew-4 astronauts:

Formation flying into our 4 little crew quarters. We made it on the first try… well, maybe the second ?
Volo in formazione fino ai nostri 4 piccoli alloggi. Riuscito al primo tentativo… beh, forse al secondo ?#MissionMinerva #Exp67 @Space_Station @esa @esaspaceflight

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) July 16, 2022

Do astronauts take Vitamin D while staying on the ISS? Here’s the answer:

“Do you need to have #VitaminD supplements?” #AskMe #MissionMinerva #SpaceTok @esa @esaspaceflight

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) July 18, 2022

A time-lapse showing the space station’s solar arrays tracking the sun:

A soothing solar array waltz in this accelerated timelapse – arrays rotate on two axes to track the sun. And our #robotics teams on the ground have been busy installing the MISSE material science experiment – can you see the robotic arm moving? #MissionMinerva

— Samantha Cristoforetti (@AstroSamantha) August 9, 2022

Here we can see an impact crater on Earth that occurred some 300 million years ago:

We explore space, and sometimes space comes to us. This “visit” if from over 300 million years ago… the Gweni-Fada #meteorite

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