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Space Adventures unveils lunar tourism plan
Posted: Wed, Aug 10, 2005, 11:54 PM ET (0354 GMT)
Soyuz 2 launch (Spaceflight Now) Space tourism firm Space Adventures announced Wednesday that it will offer a $100-million voyage around the Moon in a Soyuz spacecraft. Space Adventures said it has partnered with RSC Energia for what it called DSE-Alpha, the first of what it calls "Deep Space Expeditions". The DSE-Alpha mission would feature a Soyuz spacecraft with a Russian cosmonaut and two passengers, each paying $100 million. A Soyuz launched from Earth, after an optional visit to the ISS, would dock with a separately-launched Block DM upper stage, which would boost the Soyuz on a circumlunar trajectory that would return to Earth after five and a half days. Space Adventures, best known for arranging tourist flights to the ISS for up to $20 million each, said that the DSE-Alpha mission can be flown as early as 2008, and believes that the mission will take place by 2010. The company hopes to follow up this mission with similar expeditions in the future, eventually including manned lunar landings.
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