ESA astronaut Luca Parmitano is returning to Earth after six months on the International Space Station. He will land with Alexander Skvortsov and Christina Koch in Kazakhstan on 6 February 2020 after 201 days in space. Luca will fly directly to ESA’s European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne for an expected arrival around 21:00 GMT (22:00 CET).

Luca on his arrival at the military side of Cologne Bonn Airport where he will give a statement after the long and intense trip back from space.

Luca will give a news conference at EAC on 8 February at 11:30 GMT (12:30 CET).

Luca was launched into space on 20 July 2019 in a Soyuz spacecraft with NASA astronaut Andrew Morgan and Russian cosmonaut Alexander Skvortsov. His seven-month mission saw him take command of the International Space Station and conduct complex spacewalks to repair the cosmic-particle-hunting Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer instrument, AMS-02.

Luca supported more than 50 European experiments and 200 international experiments in space. Other highlights were Luca making the first ‘live DJ session’ in Earth orbit, addressing world leaders at the United Nations Climate Change Conference COP 25 and talking to Nobel Laureates about exoplanets and the chemistry of batteries.

Astronaut availability is limited on return from missions, because they have a busy schedule of science experiments and rehabilitation after more than six months working in weightlessness. Teams at EAC monitor the astronauts’ health and advise on diet and exercise to ensure astronauts stay fit, but events may move or can be cancelled at short notice.