From aboard the International Space Station, Expedition 34 Commander Kevin Ford recorded a special Thanksgiving message and discussed how he and his crewmates, Flight Engineers Evgeny Tarelkin and Oleg Novitskiy, are celebrating the holiday.
In addition to the space-food versions of traditional holiday favorites such as irradiated smoked turkey and thermo-stabilized yams, the station crew’s out-of-this-world Thanksgiving menu will include NASA's own cornbread dressing, as well as Russian mashed potatoes with onions, corn and a cranberry-apple dessert.
In a recent interview, Vickie Kloeris, NASA food scientist and manager of the space station food system, described the holiday fare available to the station crew and the work that goes into ensuring that astronauts have access to a delicious variety of healthy food during their long-duration spaceflights.
Expedition 34 began when Expedition 33 Commander Suni Williams and Flight Engineers Aki Hoshide and Yuri Malenchenko departed station Nov. 18 aboard their Soyuz TMA-05M spacecraft after 125 days aboard the orbiting complex.
Before departing, Williams recorded a video tour of the International Space Station.
Ford and his crewmates will tend to the station as a three-man crew until the arrival of three additional flight engineers just in time for the Christmas holidays. NASA astronaut Tom Marshburn, Canadian Space Agency astronaut Chris Hadfield, and Russian Federal Space Agency cosmonaut Roman Romanenko are scheduled to launch from the Baikonur Cosmodrome Dec. 19 and dock to the station two days later for a five-month stay. Hadfield will become the first Canadian to command the station when Ford, Novitskiy and Tarelkin depart in March, marking the start of Expedition 35.