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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

No Space Tourists Until 2009, Roscosmos Spokesman Says

The Russian Space Agency Roscosmos has announced no further space tourists will fly to the International Space Station aboard a Soyuz TMA until 2009 with all seats for the remainder of the year and throughout 2008 having been already assigned.

"The name of next space tourist will be known after the return of (Charles) Simonyi," Alexei Krasnov, head of the manned program for Roscosmos, told journalists in Moscow earlier today. The 6th space tourist will fly in in 2009.

The name of next space tourist is to be announced very soon by the Virginia-based Space Adventures, which by agreement with Roscosmos engages in the marketing of space travel to the ISS.

"We are busy drawing up diagrams of space flights for 2009, proceeding from the assumption that the ISS will be manned by six-member crews. Therefore, it is not clear so far which particular spaceship will be used for tourist to travel," Krasnov pointed out. "As for prospects for a flight of Russian space tourist, they have not been examined so far", he said.

With the Soyuz-TMA third seat in demand, Malaysian Research Cosmonaut Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor will be boosted to the space station aboard Soyuz TMA-11 October 2, 2007 while either South Korean female Yi So-yeon or male Ko San will be launched aboard Soyuz TMA-12 April 8, 2008.

1 comment:

David Stever said...

I know that Bigelow doesn't want to be thought of as the Space Hotel king, but if Space Adventures could pony up some money to buy a Bigelow structure and attach it to the ISS, they could improve the livability of the ISS six-man crew and make the tourists a lot happier as well. Thing of the positive publicity of adding a private module to the ISS, and making it a way station on the way to orbit or to cis-lunar space...