The world’s fifth private space
tourist, Charles Simonyi, Ph.D., has successfully arrived at the International Space Station (ISS) after
onboard a Soyuz spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome on April 7.
The spacecraft docked to the ISS at 3:10 p.m. (EDT) with Dr. Simonyi, Expedition 15 commander Fyodor Yurchikhin and flight engineer Oleg
Kotov aboard. They were greeted at 4:30 p.m. (EDT) by Russian cosmonaut Mikhail Tyurin and NASA astronauts, Michael Lopez-Alegria and
Sunita Williams, when the hatch was opened.
During his spaceflight, Dr. Simonyi will complete over 190 orbits of the Earth and travel over five million miles before returning home on April 20
with the Expedition 14 crew members Tyurin and Lopez-Alegria.
Eric Anderson, president and CEO of Space Adventures, the company which organized the spaceflights for the world's first and only private
space explorers, said, “Charles has arrived at the space station and will spend the next 10 days soaking up the spectacular beauty of the Earth
from orbit, feeling the freedom of weightlessness, and most importantly communicating to the billons of people on Earth just how enjoyable
spaceflight is. Our goal at Space Adventures is to provide the opportunity for as many people as possible to experience the wonder of space.”
In preparation for his spaceflight with Space Adventures, Dr. Simonyi completed a training program at the Yuri Gagarin Cosmonaut Training
Center located in Star City, Russia.
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