23 Unforgettable Moments From Astronaut Chris Hadfield

CSA astronaut Chris Hadfield washing his hands in space

International Space Station (ISS) Commander Chris Hadfield has become one of the world’s most recognisable astronauts since Neil Armstrong.

He has 850,000 twitter followers and his YouTube videos of life in space have millions of views.

He, and two other ISS residents, return to Earth on Monday night in the Soyuz capsule. Here are his biggest hits from his five months away from Earth, which — we think — went way too fast.

Hadfield launched into space in the Soyuz capsule on December 19, 2012. He arrived at the space station on December 21. This was his third visit to space. He is the astronaut at the top of the stairs in this image.

He immediately started tweeting from orbit. Here's his first picture, of him floating in the weightlessness of the ISS's microgravity.

He also started making videos of his space adventures, including this, his first, of his wristwatch in space.

He took over command of the International Space Station on March 13, as the team entered Expedition 35. He is the first Canadian commander of the space station.

He said: 'Just like early aviation, at first it wasn't for everybody, only a few could fly, and now pretty much anybody can fly anywhere around the world. We are just in the early stages of that. We haven't invented everything we need yet, but some day soon everyone will be able to get this experience to get up here and be a part of this.'

See more of Hadfield's answer >

Listen here:

One of Hadfield's most popular videos is him showing what happens when you try to wring out a towel in space. Skip to 1:50 in to get right to the most action.

Before leaving the space station, Hadfield had to command the crew through an emergency space walk to fix an ammonia leak on one of the craft's solar panels. They successfully fixed the leak.

Hadfield, NASA astronaut Tom Marshburn, and Russian astronaut Roman Romanesko, crawled into the Soyuz spacecraft that will transport them back to Earth. They closed the hatch at 3:50 p.m. EDT May 13.

Soyuz left the International Space station at 7:08 p.m. EDT, and should crash into the flat steppes of Kazakhstan at 10:30 p.m. EDT.

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