27 September 2010
Announcements - Vehicles (Good)
Russia to Take Space Tourists in 2013
Thanks to five Soyuz's a year
by G B Leatherwood
In a press release dated 9/27/10, Russia’s space agency Roscosmos announced its plans to allow two space tourists to ride its Soyuz craft along with a professional cosmonaut as pilot. “Such a proposal is under consideration of Roscosmos and the American Space Adventures (company)” said Alexei Krasnov, head of Roscosmos’ manned flights department. “There are also detailed offers which we will study in Washington at a meeting of space agencies’ heads,” he said.

The good news keeps coming: Russia’s RSC Energia corporation now says it has the capacity to build five Soyuz spacecraft a year instead of four. This means there will be at least one craft dedicated to space tourism.

Russia has not sent tourists into space since 2009, when the International Space Station ( ISS) crew increased from three to six and places were reserved for Russian and foreign astronauts.

While the US Congress fumbles around trying to decide whose political ox gets gored and which congressional district gets the pork for the overbudgeted and underdeveloped Constellation/Ares project, Russia and US space promoter Space Adventures are working on plans to send two tourists to the International Space Station in 2013. Does it not seem that space tourism will flourish despite US congressional haggling?
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G B Leatherwood 27 September 2010
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