Final boarding

 作者:上官埏     |      日期:2019-03-07 04:18:03
By Piers Wehner Dennis Tito will be the first space tourist, say Russian officials, despite disapproval from NASA. The Interdepartmental Committee confirmed his inclusion in the Soyuz crew for a flight to the International Space Station (ISS) on 28 April after he successfully completed his final cosmonaut exam. Tito previously said this moment would be the final confirmation of his contract to journey to the space station, apart from the final medical check. The committee also confirmed Talgat Musabayev as commander of the flight. Musabayev, who will be making his third space-flight, said: “Tito is a very competent specialist and a good engineer.” NASA is less confident about Tito’s inclusion on the mission, stating in a recent press release that “the presence of non-professional crew members … would place a significant burden on the expedition and detract from the overall safety.” However, Manuel Valls of the European Space Agency told New Scientist: “This is a very subjective judgement for NASA to make. If he is trained as a professional astronaut there is no reason for it to be unsafe.” “We are not opposed, in fact we are willing to promote the flight of civilians,” said Valls. “ISS should not just be for astronauts, but for civilians too.” Tito, a sixty-year-old American, is aware of NASA’s unwillingness to see him board the ISS. “Some people in senior management might not be too enthusiastic,” he said at a recent press conference in Star City near Moscow. He worked as an engineer with NASA from 1964 to 1972 before making his fortune as head of an investment company. He is believed to have paid $20 million to travel to the ISS. This is the second time Russia has attempted to send a civilian into space. Last March a plan to send Vladimir Steklov, an actor,