X-Prize’s Ansari aims for the ISS

by Chris Bergin

Anousheh Ansari, co-founder and CEO of Telecom Technologies, Inc. (TTI) and multi-million co-contributor to the X-Prize foundation, is in training in Russia as back up cosmonaut to SFP Daisuke Enomoto (Japan).

Sources in the US are revealing that the role model will begin full training from April, at the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center (GCTC).

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Expedition 14 currently consists of CDR Michael Lopez-Alegria (USA) – launch and landing on Soyuz TMA-9, FE1 Mikhail Tyurin (Russia) – launch and landing on Soyuz TMA-9, FE2/SO Sunita Williams (USA) – launching on Discovery (STS-116), landing on Endeavour (STS-118).
SFP Daisuke Enomoto (Japan) is set to launch on Soyuz TMA-9, on a launch date of September 14, 2006, landing on Soyuz TMA-8 after a short 10 day stay onboard the International Space Station (ISS). Ansari will become his back up.
Anousheh, along with her brother-in-law Amir Ansari, set up the X-Prize through their joint multi-million dollar contribution on May 5, 2004. The $10m prize was won by Burt Rutan’s SpaceShipOne in 2004.

Ansari is also a co-founder of Prodea, which signed a deal with Space Adventures, Ltd – a space tourism company that works with the Federal Space Agency of the Russian Federation (FSA).
‘Our goal in supporting the X Prize was to launch a new space industry through the introduction of commercial suborbital spaceflights,’ said Ansari at the time of the link-up in a press release.

‘We partnered with Space Adventures because they have proven that there is a market for space tourism by having been the first company to fly a private citizen to space, and remains today the only company to have actually taken tourists to space,’
Born in 1967 in Iran, Ansari immigrated to the United States in 1984 and attended the George Mason University, where she received she became a bachelor of science in electrical engineering and computer science. She went on to receive her master’s degree at George Washington University.



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