WEST ORANGE, NJ - Astronauts Scott and Mark Kelly, who grew up in West Orange, will be featured in a new PBS series, “A Year in Space,” airing on March 2. The first installment tracks Scott Kelly’s mission from training and launch, through his 12 months aboard the International Space Station, and will even include his descent and landing back on Earth within hours of that event.

Scott Kelly and Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Kornienko have been aboard the International Space Station since their launch on March 27, 2015.

On October 15, 2015, Scott Kelly broke the U.S. record for the most time in space (cumulative) by a U.S. astronaut of 381 days, 15 hours and 11 minutes, including the 180 days on his previous three missions. Scott Kelly will also become the first U.S. astronaut to spend nearly one full year in space.

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But having the record isn’t Scott Kelly’s goal. On October 16, he tweeted, “"Records are meant to be broken. Look forward to one of my colleagues surpassing [mine] on our Journey to Mars!"

The mission is a perfect study, according to NASA, as they track Scott Kelly’s physical and emotional changes, and his biological functions. NASA hopes to identify precisely what changes happen to Scott Kelly as a result of 12 months in space by comparing him to his identical twin, Mark, a retired astronaut, on Earth. The research is “eagerly” anticipated by scientists who will study it and research the challenges of human travel to other planets.

The second installment of “A Year in Space” is scheduled to air in 2017, where some of those results will be discussed. It will also take a detailed look at Scott Kelly’s return to “normal” life back on Earth, and the future of living beyond Earth.

“A Year in Space” is an incredible opportunity to immerse audiences into an exciting current event, nearly in real-time,” said Chief Programming Executive and General Manager, General Audience Programming, PBS, Beth Hoppe. “However, it is also a compelling human drama exploring the potential tragedies or triumphs of exploration. It is as close to a feature film as any documentary can get.” 

“A Year in Space” airs during “PBS Space Week,” a week-long look at space starting March 1, 2016. 

Prior Articles on the Kelly's

All pics courtesy NASA