Cohasset astronaut to return to space as commander of Crew-6 mission
COHASSET − NASA astronaut and Cohasset native Stephen Bowen is preparing to make his fourth trip into space in February, more than 10 years since his last mission sent him into orbit.
Bowen, a former Navy submariner and an MIT graduate, is one of four crew members tapped for NASA’s upcoming SpaceX mission, the government agency announced. He will serve as commander of the Crew-6 team, to which he was assigned in December 2021.
NASA said the mission to the International Space Station will allow the astronauts to "perform science, technology demonstrations and maintenance activities aboard the microgravity laboratory." The Crew-6 will spend up to six months at the space station before returning to Earth.
As mission commander, Bowen will be responsible for all phases of flight, from launch to re-entry. He will serve as an Expedition 69 flight engineer aboard the station.
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The mission is scheduled to launch no earlier than Feb. 26 from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
Bowen graduated from Cohasset High School in 1982. He attended the the U.S. Naval Academy and MIT, where he obtained a master’s degree in ocean engineering. In July 2000, Bowen became the first submarine officer selected as an astronaut by NASA.
He has logged more than 40 days in space, including 47 hours and 18 minutes during seven spacewalks. He was aboard missions in 2008, 2010 and 2011.
Bowen has returned to the South Shore several times since joining NASA, including a 2015 Fall River stop. Then 50 years old, Bowen said he grew up during the latter end of the space-race era and argues sending men to the moon paid dividends in a generation interested in science and innovation.
Reach Mary Whitfill at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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This article originally appeared on The Patriot Ledger: Cohasset astronaut to return to space as commander of SpaceX mission