ZHEZKAZGAN, KAZAKHSTAN – Three crew members of the International Space Station returned to Earth on Sunday after completing a 5½-month mission, the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration said. A Soyuz spacecraft carrying Russian cosmonaut Anton Shkaplerov, Norishige Kanai of Japan and Scott Tingle of NASA landed in the Kazakhstan countryside around 6:40 p.m., 3½ hours after detaching from the station. The three had been on the orbital laboratory since mid-December, with Shkaplerov, 46, serving as mission commander from February until he turned over command to American Drew Feustel on Saturday. Kanai, a 41-year-old former Maritime Self-Defense Force doctor, drew international attention for claiming on Twitter to have grown 9 cm taller after three weeks at the space station due to the absence of gravity. He later said he had made a measurement mistake and it had only grown 2 cm.
On January 8th, Japanese astronaut Norishige Kanai caused some concern when he tweeted that he'd grown about 9 cm (around 3 and a half inches) in his three weeks about the International Space Station. Well, it turns it that's not actually the case. Kanai, who is a tweeted an apology last night, saying that he re-measured himself after the media flurry surrounding his announcement, and he's only grown about 2 cm.