Expedition 31 Crew Welcomed Warmly in Kazakhstan and Russia

4y ago


Expedition 31 Commander Oleg Kononenko, NASA Flight Engineer Don Pettit and European Space Agency Flight Engineer Andre Kuipers were greeted in a traditional ceremony at the airport in Karaganda, Kazakhstan on July 1, 2012, hours after landing in their Soyuz TMA-03M spacecraft on the steppe of Kazakhstan southeast of the town of Dzhezkazgan. After the ceremony, the crew split up, with Kononenko returning to his training base in Star City, Russia, while Pettit and Kuipers boarded a NASA plane in Karaganda to return to the Johnson Space Center in Houston. The trio completed 193 days in space and 191 days aboard the International Space Station following a launch in late December. The footage includes interviews conducted with Pettit and Kuipers in Karaganda before beginning their trip back to Houston.