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  ESA: André Kuiper's ISS 2011 mission

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Author Topic:   ESA: André Kuiper's ISS 2011 mission
BA002
Member

Posts: 88
From: Utrecht,NL
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 08-05-2009 10:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for BA002   Click Here to Email BA002     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Great news for the space community in Holland: Dutch astronaut André Kuipers has been selected for ISS Expedition 30/31. He will be launched in December 2011 to live and work aboard ISS for about six months.

Well done and well deserved for a really great and enthusiastic Flying Dutchman!

Leo Bakker, Utrecht, Holland

ESA astronaut André Kuipers to spend six months on the ISS starting in 2011

As a result of the latest International Space Station Multi-Lateral Crew Operations Panel (MCOP) recently held in Houston, ESA has today announced that the European crewmember of Expedition 30/31 to fly to the International Space Station in 2011 will be André Kuipers from the Netherlands.

Therefore, as already stated by ESA's Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain on several occasions, an astronaut of German nationality will be assigned to the following opportunity for an ESA astronaut to fly on board the ISS on a six-month mission. ESA plans to obtain the agreement of the ISS partners to accommodate the following opportunity in the 2013-2014 timeframe.

André Kuipers is scheduled to reach the ISS in December 2011 on board a Soyuz spacecraft and to remain on the Station as part of the six-astronaut international crew until June 2012. This will be Kuipers' second visit to the ISS after the 11-day Delta Mission in April 2004, which was sponsored by the Dutch government and was also carried out with a Soyuz spacecraft.

The European astronaut, who already served as back-up to ESA's astronaut Frank De Winne for his currently ongoing OasISS mission (Expedition 20/21), will be trained for robotic activities and for a possible Extra-Vehicular Activity (EVA).

"I am very excited at the prospect of preparing for such a challenging mission and am looking forward to being in space again. I am proud to be part of an organisation like ESA that has been able to secure one long-duration flight opportunity every year for four years in a row. This is of great importance for the experience and knowledge we European astronauts can gain," stated André Kuipers, who will resume training very soon.

Simonetta Di Pippo, ESA Director of Human Spaceflight said, "I am very happy with the cooperation and understanding between ESA and NASA, and all the international partners and this further positive result. André Kuipers has solid expertise, a high degree of preparation and an advanced training level. His role in this expedition will once again enable ESA to be in the inner circle that comprises the most reliable space agencies among the partners. We view Europe's role in human spaceflight and exploration, currently and in the future, with more and more confidence. We have and will be running a very dense programme of missions to and utilisation of the ISS as we confidently prepare future projects and the extension of the ISS lifetime. This is another achievement of the ESA Human Spaceflight and Exploration programme, and represents the best way of securing continuity between the current European astronauts and the six new members of the European Astronaut Corps who will start their training on 1 September this year."

ESA's Astronaut Corps is heavily involved in ISS operations: Frank De Winne (B) is currently on board the ISS and will be taking over command of the Station in October. He will be joined by Christer Fuglesang (S) in August, who will carry out his Alissé mission as a member of the STS-128 flight to the International Space Station tentatively scheduled for a launch no earlier than 25 August. Paolo Nespoli (I) is training for a long-duration mission on board the Station in late 2010. Roberto Vittori (I) is awaiting confirmation of his assignment to an ASI-owned flight opportunity on board the NASA Shuttle, possibly in the second half of 2010.

André Kuipers is a medical doctor who joined the European Astronaut Corps in 1999 and who has been actively involved in research activities on board the ISS.

Delta7
Member

Posts: 1153
From: Ossian IN USA
Registered: Oct 2007

posted 08-05-2009 10:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Delta7   Click Here to Email Delta7     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Any word on who Kuipers' backup will be?

Jacques van Oene
Member

Posts: 715
From: Houten, The Netherlands
Registered: Oct 2001

posted 08-06-2009 05:38 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Jacques van Oene     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Delta7:
Any word on who Kuipers' backup will be?
No, but the Soyuz TMA-03M (launch - November 20, 2011) crew will be:
CDR Oleg Kononenko and FE Donald Pettit.

Delta7
Member

Posts: 1153
From: Ossian IN USA
Registered: Oct 2007

posted 08-06-2009 10:12 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Delta7   Click Here to Email Delta7     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Therefore, as already stated by ESA's Director General Jean-Jacques Dordain on several occasions, an astronaut of German nationality will be assigned to the following opportunity for an ESA astronaut to fly on board the ISS on a six-month mission. ESA plans to obtain the agreement of the ISS partners to accommodate the following opportunity in the 2013-2014 timeframe.
That would have to be either Hans Schlegel or Alexander Gerst. Being that Schlegel will be around 63 years old by then, I'm assuming it will be Gerst.

All times are CT (US)

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