Christina Koch checked off another milestone in her NASA career, taking the record for the longest spaceflight by a woman, according to CBS News.
The previous record holder, Peggy Whitson, spent 288 consecutive days in space, and still holds the overall U.S. record of nearly 666 days over five flights. Koch, as of December 28, has spent 289 consecutive days in space and is expected to reach 328 days by the time she returns to Earth in early February.
“It’s a huge honor,” Koch told ‘CBS This Morning.’ “Peggy is a heroine of mine who’s also been kind enough to mentor me through the years. You know … it’s not so much how many days you’re up here, but what you do with each of those days. That reminds me to bring my best every single day.”
Along the way, Koch also was part of the first all-female spacewalk on October 18, when she and Jessica Meir “ventured outside to replace a faulty battery charge-discharge unit. It was the first EVA by two women in the 54 years since the late Soviet cosmonaut Alexey Leonov carried out history’s first spacewalk in 1965.”
With a newfound focus on space, this is an important milestone for the history books.