Starman Peake’s capsule splashes down at museum
Exhibit: Astronautt reunited with descent module
Astronaut Tim Peake has been reunited with the capsule that brought him back to earth after his six-month mission in space.
The Soyuz TMA-19M descent module has gone on display at the National Museum of Scotland (NMS) in Edinburgh until August 4 – along with the spacesuit Major Peake wore on his high-speed journey back from the International Space Station (ISS).
The capsule, which bears scorch marks from its journey through the atmosphere, was the only part of the spacecraft to re- turn to earth, landing on the steppes of Kazakhstan on Saturday June 18, 2016.
Major Peake, 46, said seeing the module again reminds him of his mission.
The married father-oftwo said: “Every time I see it it brings back huge memories of the mission particularly when you see the condition of the spacecraft now. It evokes memories of the re-entry and how punishing that was, 1,500C and eight minutes as this thing was coming through the atmosphere. But on the whole it brings back memories of the whole mission.
“The return journey is a dynamic event. There’s an awful lot happens in this spacecraft.
“We leave the space station about three hours before we actually re-enter the earth’s atmosphere and it has to do a de-orbit burn. It has to separate into three parts and then it has to go through about eight minutes of re-entry and then of course the parachute has to open successfully and then land on the steppes of Kazakhstan so there’s an awful lot goes on with the re-entry and landing – it’s a very complex part of the mission.”
During his 186 days in space Major Peake participated in more than 250 scientific experiments and read the CBeebies bedtime story to children on earth.
He said one of the highlights was conducting a spacewalk together with NASA astronaut Tim Kopra to repair the station’s power supply.
Major Peake, a former British Army Air Corps officer, said: “The whole mission was a wonderful privilege.”
“When I see it, it brings back huge memories of the mission”
ON TERRA FIRMA: Tim Peake at the National Museum in Edinburgh yesterday