Russia to suspend tourist trips to ISS till 2012-2013
Russia's first piloted Soyuz spaceship for tourist trips to space will be created in 2012-2013, an official said.Updated: Mar 29, 2009 16:25 IST
Russia's first piloted Soyuz spaceship for tourist trips to space will be created in 2012-2013, an official said.Alexei Krasnov, who is responsible for piloted missions in Roskosmos, told a press conference yesterday that the space corporation Energia made four piloted spaceships a year.Since a six-member crew will be working aboard the International
Space Station starting this year, space tourism will require a separate ship, he said.However its construction is experiencing serious problems: Energia lacks sufficient capacities and personnel."However we hope that Energia will be able to build a fifth ship in 2012-2013," Krasnov said, adding that Roskosmos would suspend tourist trips to the ISS till then.There will also be problems with the transportation of astronauts from other ISS Club member states, such as Malaysia, Brazil and South Korea, Krasnov said.
Energia President Vitaly Lopota said that in order to build a fifth spaceship it would be necessary to increase financing within three years because it usually takes two years and a half to build a spaceship."We fulfil state orders by 30 per cent using loans," he said.US businessman of Hungarian background Charles Simonyi is making his second, and last, trip to the ISS as a space tourist in the years to come.
First Published: Mar 29, 2009 16:23 IST