A twelve-year-old girl from Moscow, Anna Chibiskova, has won a children’s contest for the best emblem of the Soyuz TMA 14 spaceship, its crew commander Gennady Padalka said.
He said that children from Russia, the United States, Europe and Asia took part in the contest. The second place in the competition was bagged by a girl from the United States, and the third went to a boy from Russia’s Uglegorsk, near the prospective construction site of Russia’s new spaceport, Vostochny.
Chibiskova drew the Earth held in a child’s hands along with the flags of Russia and the United States, whose representatives will take the seats in the Soyuz TMA 14 on March 25, 2009. The winning drawing has been transformed into the spaceship emblem by expert designers and approved by Federal Space Agency Director Anatoly Perminov.
The Federal Space Agency had announced the contest in late October last year in order to promote children’s interest in space exploration and to encourage future astronauts. “Children are very creative and may add value to the design of space symbols, while we, professionals, are very conservative people,” said Padalka, who had had two lengthy space missions onboard the Russian Mir orbiting station and the International Space Station.
He added that the International Space Station emblem was also designed by children. The Soyuz TMA design is the most recent revision of the Soyuz spacecraft used by the Russian Federal Space Agency for manned spaceflights.
The spacecraft features several changes to accommodate requirements requested by the NASA in order to service the ISS, including more latitude for the height and weight of the crew and improved parachute systems.