The team of four American astronauts set the record on Sunday while aboard the International Space Station

By Jason Duaine Hahn
February 11, 2021 02:23 PM
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Gregg Newton/AFP via Getty
| Credit: Gregg Newton/AFP via Getty

A team of American astronauts now owns the record for the most days spent in space by a crew launched from a U.S. spacecraft.

The team — made up of flight engineers Michael Hopkins, Victor Glover, Shannon Walker and Soichi Noguchi — have been in space since November after reaching the International Space Station aboard SpaceX's Crew Dragon Resilience spacecraft, according to NASA. Their trip marks the second crewed mission for Elon Musk's SpaceX.

On Sunday, the foursome surpassed the U.S. record of 84 days that was previously set by the Skylab 4 crew — which included Gerald Carr, Edward Gibson and William Pogue — in February 1974.

To mark the occasion, the crew spoke with Gibson while aboard the ISS.

"On our 84th day in space Crew-1 extends the record for most days in space for a U.S. human space capsule," Glover wrote in a Twitter post that included two pictures of the crew speaking with Gibson. "Originally set in 1973-74 by the Skylab 4 crew of Gerald Carr, Edward Gibson and William Pogue. Today we had the honor of speaking with Ed."

The SpaceX crew originally launched out of Kennedy Space Center, and are set to stay inside the ISS for a total of six months to help with maintenance and research, ABC News previously reported.

The crew named their Dragon capsule "Resilience" due to the difficulties of 2020, which included a pandemic and social strife, the Associated Press reported.

"It's been a tough year for everybody for a lot of different reasons," said Hopkins, the commander of the mission. "We felt like if the name of our vehicle could give a little hope, a little inspiration, put a smile on people's face, then that is definitely what we wanted to do."

The astronauts will remain in orbit until the springtime, at which point their replacements will arrive onboard another SpaceX Dragon capsule. They will reportedly receive regular food and supply deliveries through a cargo version of the capsule.

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SpaceX's first manned flight took off with NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley from the Kennedy Space Center on May 30. It was originally scheduled for takeoff on May 27 and delayed due to weather.The "Resilience" crew's accomplishment is not the first milestone for NASA as of late. In October 2019, astronauts Christina Koch and Jessica Meir performed the first all-women spacewalk in the space agency's history.