Thursday, March 26, 2009

Space Tourism?

Charles Simonyi, a Hungarian-born software developer, paid to launch into outer space and visit the International Space Station. He, and a crew of flight engineers and astronauts, boarded the Expedition 19, which left Earth's atmosphere today at about 8 AM EST. Over the next two days, the shuttle's commander, Gennady Padalka, will guide the spacecraft toward a docking at the space station’s aft port around 9:14 a.m. Saturday. In a telephone interview from Baikonur, Mr. Simonyi said he plans to help Russian engineers calibrate space radiation sensors, chat with school kids via ham radio, and discuss his experiences with Internet readers. He would not discuss how much he actually paid for his space flights, saying only that the list price for a Soyuz seat was $35 million.

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