Moscow: Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka has broken the record for the longest time spent in space with a total of 803 days as on July 2015.
"The record is official. Gennady Padalka has become the man who spent the most time in space," informed a spokesman for the Russian federal space agency Roscosmos.
The 57-year-old Gennady beat the old record of 803 days, nine hours and 41 minutes set by fellow cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev (now retired) across six missions from 1998 to 2005.
Padalka is the current commander of the International Space Station which has been orbiting the Earth. When Padalka returns to Earth in September with fellow ISS crew members Mikhail Kornienko and Scott Kelly, he will have spent a total of 877 days, or roughly 2.5 years, in space.
Till now, he has participated in nine space walks till date and aims to set a record of 1000 days in space.
He is a veteran spacewalker and was described by a US colleague as the best at training space rookies on how to live in zero gravity.
"If you're a new guy (on the ISS), the guy you want to fly with is Padalka, he's the greatest Obi-Wan ever," astronaut Mike Fincke said in a NASA video, apparently referring to a key character in the Star Wars saga.
(With Agency inputs)