Krikalev was selected as a cosmonaut in 1985, completed his basic training in 1986, and, for a time, was assigned to the Buran Shuttle program. In early 1988, he began training for his first long-duration flight aboard the MIR space station. Soyuz TM-7 was launched on November 26, 1988, with Krikalev as flight engineer, Commander Alexander Volkov, and French Astronaut Jean-Loup Chretien.
In April 1990, Krikalev began preparing for his second flight as a member of the backup crew for the eighth long-duration MIR mission, which also included 5 EVA's and a week of Soviet-Japanese operations. In December 1990, Krikalev began training for the ninth MIR mission which included training for 10 EVA's. Soyuz TM-12 launched on May 19, 1991, with Krikalev as flight engineer.
In July 1991, Krikalev agreed to stay on MIR as flight engineer for the next crew, scheduled to arrive in October because the next two planned flights had been reduced to one. Krikalev returned to Earth on March 25, 1992. In completing his second mission, Krikalev logged more than 1 year and 3 months in space, including seven EVA's. Krikalev flew on STS-60, the first joint U.S./Russian Space Shuttle Mission, launched on February 3, 1994. STS-60 landed at Kennedy Space Center, Florida, on February 11, 1994. With the completion of this flight, Krikalev logged an additional 8 days, 7 hours, 9 minutes in space.
Additional biographical information on the STS-88 crew members and other NASA astronauts is available on the World Wide Web at: http://www.jsc.nasa.gov/Bios/astrobio.html