- Mir EO -26 Soyuz TM- 28 (1998/1999)
- ISS Expedition 9
- ISS Expedition 19
- ISS Expedition 20
Education and military service
Padalka completed his studies in 1979 at the Military Air Academy in Jeisk from. Subsequently, he served in the Soviet Air Force as a pilot of six different types of aircraft. Padalka accumulated over 1500 hours of flight experience and was transferred to the rank of colonel. With over 300 completed jumps he is an instructor for skydiving. In addition, Padalka worked until 1994 as a UNESCO expert for environmental protection technologies.
After his selection for astronaut candidates Padalka took from June 1989 to January 1991 at the basic training in Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut training center part at the end of his appointment to test cosmonauts took place. From August 1996 Padalka trained as commander of the reserve team for a possible stay aboard the Mir space station. He was about replacement of Anatoly Solovyov, who started on 5 August 1997 as a member of the long-term occupation Mir EO -24 into space and was staying for half a year in the Space Station.
From June 1999 to July 2001 Padalka trained for leadership of a possible emergency mission to the International Space Station (ISS). Furthermore Padalka acted as commander of the backup crew of ISS Expedition 4, which began in December 2001.
Mir EO -26
After a ten- month preparatory phase Padalka started on 13 August 1998 aboard the spacecraft Soyuz TM -28 on his first space flight. As commander of the crew Mir EO -26 Padalka spent together with the Flight Engineer Sergei Avdeev 198 days in space. During the mission Padalka took a nearly six-hour spacewalk, which was used for the assembly of scientific experiments from Japan and France. In addition, Padalka and Avdeev supervised an extensive research program with international trials. On 28 February 1999 Padalka returned together with the first Slovak cosmonaut Ivan Bella back to Earth, while Adejew continued his stay aboard Mir.
ISS Expedition 9
In March 2002, Padalka was given command of the ninth long-term crew of the International Space Station. He started on 19 April 2004 on board the spaceship Soyuz TMA- 4 together with the US- American Mike Fincke and astronaut André Kuipers Dutch science. Padalka, Fincke spent together with 185 days in the station, dealt primarily with the 42 Russian research experiments aboard the ISS. He also completed routine maintenance for the maintenance of the station. During ISS Expedition 9 total of four spacewalks were made; the first spacewalk on 24 June 2004 but had to be canceled after only 14 minutes because of problems at the spacesuit Orlan. The following room exits were used mainly to install Andockhilfen for the new European space freighter ATV. Padalka returned on 14 October 2004 along with Fincke and Russian cosmonaut Yuri Shargin test back to Earth.
ISS Expeditions 19/20
In November 2008, Padalka was appointed commander of the first six-member crew of the ISS.
The launch of the Soyuz TMA -14 as part of the ISS Expedition 19 took place on 26 March 2009. On 5 June 2009 Padalka conducted a spacewalk from where, together with Michael Barratt passive antennas for the price- docking system at it Zvezda module anbrachte. A second exit took place on 10 June and lasted 12 minutes. He and Barratt away a cover in the docking of the Zvezda module. Both exits were required for docking of the Russian Poisk module, which arrived at the ISS in November 2009. Padalka handed over the command of the ISS to the Belgian Frank De Winne and returned on 11 October 2009, together with Barratt and space tourist Guy Laliberté with Soyuz TMA -14 returned to earth.
ISS Expeditions 31/32
Padalka was commander of the spaceship Soyuz TMA- 04M, which was launched to the ISS on May 15, 2012. During the ISS Expedition 31, he took over the function of a flight engineer and moved on July 1, 2012, to commander of ISS Expedition 32. On September 17, 2012, he returned with Soyuz TMA- 04M back to Earth. He has moved up in the list of spaceman with the longest stay in space in fourth place, behind the cosmonauts Krikaljow, Kaleri and Avdeev Through this flight.
In April 1999, Padalka the award Hero of the Russian Federation was by a decree of the then Russian President, Boris Yeltsin awarded.
Padalka is married to Irina Ponomareva Anatoljewna. The couple has three daughters.