19 Aug '11, 11am

Russia plans to build orbiting hotel in space

ZHUKOVSKY, Russia (Reuters) - A hotel in orbit, lunar sightseeing flights and luxury rides into the cosmos - all are part of Russia's vision to ensure it is not left behind in the growing space tourism industry. Russian firms unveiled their plans at the country's premiere air show this week at Zhukovsky, outside Moscow, saying the race was on to build a new craft to take people into space following the retirement of Nasa's space shuttle in April. RKK Energia unveiled plans for a replacement shuttle and Orbital Technologies said it hoped to build an orbiting hotel with room for seven guests by 2016. Other plans include flying tourists to the dark side of the moon and, by 2030, to Mars. 'Space tourism is a real and fast-growing business,' said Sergei Kostenko, head of Russian firm Orbital Technologies, said at the MAKS air show. 'Whoever builds the first new spaceship now wi...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/TechandScience/S...

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