MINSK, 11 September (BelTA) - Manned astronautics and space tourism will be actively developing in the 21st century, ASE President, U.S. astronaut Bonnie Dunbar told the media on the sidelines of the 31st Planetary Congress of the Association of Space Explorers (ASE) on 11 September, BelTA has learned.
“Today, in the 21st century, many countries use space for peaceful research purposes. Representatives of 38 countries have been on orbit so far. I think that in the ongoing decade we will witness how other countries start implementing space programs and sending their cosmonauts and astronauts into orbit. People will go to space not only for research purposes but also for travel. I think that during this century we will see astronautics develop as actively as aviation did in the last century. I cannot predict the future, but I can say for sure that solid foundation for it is based on science, engineering, and research. The academies of sciences play the key role here,” Bonnie Dunbar said.
In her opinion, the International Space Station is the most important project currently implemented in space. This program involves five different space agencies: those of Russia, the United States, Japan, Canada and Europe. “More and more countries start participating in space exploration, and their number will continue increasing,” Bonnie Dunbar added.
The 31st Planetary Congress of the Association of Space Explorers is taking place in Minsk on 9-15 September. Taking part in the forum are over 80 cosmonauts and astronauts from 17 countries. The theme of the congress is Creating the Future of Space. On 11 September the participants of the forum laid flowers at the Victory Monument in Minsk. The National Academy of Sciences of Belarus is hosting two technical sessions built around the theme “Our Future in Space”.
The ASE is an international not-for-profit organization created in 1985 to share the best practices in the area of manned space flights. Every year the ASE planetary congress gathers cosmonauts and astronauts as well as representatives of research institutions and national space agencies.More about Society