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How Does the Body React After Spending 340 Days in Space?

Plamena M.Plamena M.

Astronauts Scott Kelly and Mikhail Kornienko have returned to Earth after a full 340 days in Space. They have shed light on how the human body reacts to such an extended period of 0 gravity.

Immediately after their return, the American Kelly revealed that he had been experiencing constant dizziness and super sensitive skin since coming back home. He and his Russian colleague successfully completed a special international mission. Its goal was to study all the effects resulting from an extended stay in Space and how this affects the human body. The results will help scientists prepare for a manned flight to Mars.

Upon their return, the astronauts were subjected to a full examination. Their physical, genetic and psychological characteristics were recorded. One of the visible effects that the absence of gravity had on Kelly was his increase in height by 1 1/2″ (3.8 cm), the result of his temporarily enlarged spine. But after returning to Earth his height went back to its usual measurement.


When they came back to Earth, all of Scott Kelly's characteristics were compared to those of his twin brother Mark, who is also an astronaut, but remained on Earth during that period. Analysis included a MRI comparison of the organs and blood vessels of the twins, as well as genetic analysis and a study of the effects of the radiation. The data gathered so far is being kept top secret. The finds will be disclosed publicly before the official publication.

The main goal of the tests is to learn as much as possible about the potentially harmful effects of space flight. They will allow for a manned mission to deep space. With current technology, a journey to neighboring planets and asteroids in the Solar System would last more than 1 year, making this type of research on eventual effects absolutely imperative.