Channel 4 to broadcast live from International Space Station as part of its Space Season

Channel 4 will broadcast an interactive two-hour live special show from the International Space Station in March, to end a whole month of programming dedicated to space travel and exploration.

Live from Space: Lap of the Planet will be broadcast from both the station orbiting Earth and mission control in Houston. It will be hosted by Dermot O'Leary and will interact with the astronauts on board as they circle around the planet, a journey that takes 90 minutes.

There will be live links with astronauts Rick Mastracchio and Koichi Wakata, who will be aboard the ISS, and Professor Stephen Hawking, Brit astronaut Tim Peake and space veteran Mike Massimino will be on the ground to lend their thoughts.

"The ISS is a incredible example of humans working together. To have been granted this access by NASA to the ISS and Mission Control is a true British TV first. We hope to show what life on board is really like, what happens when things go wrong and then finally giving viewers a live lap of planet Earth," said David Glover, head of Specialist Factual at Channel 4.

Other shows planned for the channel's Space Season in March include hour-long documentaries Astronauts: Living in Space and Astronauts: Houston We Have a Problem.