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Russia to charge $51mln for Soyuz spacecraft trip from NASA


Soyuz spacecraft of NASA. A File Photo.

MOSCOW (BNS): Russia's Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) and NASA have agreed on a new price of 51 million US dollar for a return trip of U.S. astronauts to the International Space Station (ISS) on Soyuz spacecraft after 2012, according to a Russian space official.

"We have reached an agreement with NASA to increase the price for a single seat on Soyuz space craft for U.S. astronauts traveling to the ISS to $51 million, with adjustment for inflation," said Alexei Krasnov, director of manned flight programs at Roscosmos on Wednesday.

NASA signed a 719-million-dollar contract for 15 Soyuz seats and 5.6 tons of cargo in 2007, for a return trip to the ISS.

NASA said in April "these services are being procured through Roscosmos because the Soyuz is the only proven crew transportation and rescue vehicle, since the Space Shuttle which is scheduled for retirement in September 2010, currently compatible and able to dock to the ISS and capable of providing the needed services."

NASA earlier said it planned to buy up to 24 seats aboard Russian Soyuz spacecraft to fly U.S. astronauts to the ISS after the space shuttle is retired in September 2010.

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