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News briefs: May 22
Posted: Thu, May 23, 2002, 6:59 AM ET (1059 GMT)
  • One of the experiments flown by South African space tourist Mark Shuttleworth is in danger of being lost because of a bureaucratic snafu, a South African newspaper reported Wednesday. Stem cell samples flown on Shuttleworth's flight are currently impounded at a Moscow cargo facility because Russian customs officials need information about the samples and the liquid nitrogen dewar that contains them. The scientist involved with the experiment told the Cape Argus newspaper that they have until June 5 to get the samples back fore they are ruined.
  • Lance Bass has delayed a final series of medical tests before making a decision on a possible space flight because of a cold, a Russian publication reported Wednesday. Bass was in Moscow this week to undergo a final series of tests, but has delayed those tests for an unspecified period of time after contracting a cold, according to an article by the Russian-language publication Bass, as well as rival tourist candidate Lori Garver, is still trying to round up financial support for the mission. A final decision on who will fly on the October Soyuz mission is expected in the near future.
  • A division of Liberty Media is in negotiations to take over Astrolink, a satellite communications venture that foundered last year. Liberty Satellite and Technology, which already owns nearly a third of Astrolink, is negotiating with Lockheed Martin, TRW, and Telespazio to acquire the rest of the company. Astrolink planned to launch four satellites to provide high-speed data services.
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