Speed Reads

Out of this World

Astronaut Christina Koch will spend a record-breaking 11 months in space

Astronaut Christina Koch will soon break the record for longest single spaceflight by a woman, NASA announced Wednesday.

Koch will beat out former NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson, who was in space for 288 days two years ago. Koch, who arrived at the space station in March will stay on mission until February 2020, NASA writes.

The 328-day orbit will allow researchers to study the effect of long-term spaceflights on the body, The Verge writes. Lab tests of former NASA astronaut Scott Kelley, who was in space for nearly a year, compared his DNA to that of his twin brother — revealing how space flight can damage DNA and the brain, says The Verge.

It has been a buzz-worthy year for NASA's female astronauts: Last month, Koch and Anne McClain were among NASA's top picks for its first female-led spacewalk. The trip was later canceled amid spacesuit sizing issues.