NASA astronaut Don Pettit set for 4th space station mission in Sep 2024

“NASA astronaut Don Pettit is set to embark on his fourth journey to the International Space Station (ISS) as a flight engineer for Expedition 71/72 in September 2024. Launching aboard the Roscosmos Soyuz MS-26 spacecraft alongside cosmonauts Alexey Ovchinin and Ivan Vagner, Pettit will engage in critical scientific research and technological demonstrations over their six-month stay, aimed at enhancing the readiness of crew members for future space endeavors.

A seasoned space explorer, Pettit, who was selected by NASA in 1996, has previously contributed significantly to space technology and human exploration through his roles in three other spaceflights. His extensive experience includes serving as a science officer, operating the robotic arm during space shuttle missions, and engaging in spacewalks totaling over 13 hours. His upcoming mission will add to his already impressive 370 days spent in orbit.

Pettit’s career highlights include expanding the ISS’s living quarters, installing advanced life support systems, and capturing the first commercial cargo spacecraft, the SpaceX Dragon, marking significant milestones in space station history and commercial spaceflight.

Originating from Silverton, Oregon, with advanced degrees in chemical engineering, Pettit’s pre-NASA career involved significant research at Los Alamos National Laboratory. His upcoming mission underscores over two decades of human presence on the ISS, highlighting its role in scientific advancement, commercial space development, and the preparation for deep space exploration missions to the Moon and Mars.”–Web Desk