S.P.Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia hosted
a meeting of the Council of Chief Designers for the Russian
Segment of the International Space Station (The Council
chairman and the Technical Manger of Russia’s manned space
programs is the Designer General, member of the Russian
Academy of Sciences Yu.P.Semenov).

The meeting heard reports on progress of work on the International
Space Station over the period of April to September, 2003,
as well as on the readiness to implement a new phase in
the program.

RSC Energia Deputy Designer General Yu.I.Grigoriev reported
on the main results of Expeditions Six and Seven (ISS-6
and ISS-7) to the International Space Station, on proposals
for the mission plan of Expedition Eight (ISS-8) and the
fifth visiting mission, and provided an overview of the
space station status and progress of preparations for the
launch of Soyuz TMA-3 manned spacecraft.

Also heard were reports from Chief Designers, responsible
representatives of system developers and manufacturers for
the spacecraft flight readiness; from V.G.Korzun (first
deputy head of the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center) about
flight readiness of the crews of ISS-8 and visiting mission
five; from V.V.Bogomolov (Deputy Director of the Institute
for Medical and Biological Problems) about the state of
health of the crews of ISS-7, ISS-8 and taxi mission five;
from pilot-cosmonaut V.A.Soloviev (head of the Lead Operations
Control Team (LOCT), Head of Division at S.P.Korolev RSC
Energia) about ISS mission progress, mission control documentation
readiness, LOCT personnel and crews readiness for the upcoming
docking of Soyuz TMA-3 with the space station; from A.T.Goryachenkov
(Deputy Director General of the Central Research Institute
for Machine-building) – about the findings of this organization
of Rosaviacosmos on the ISS status and Soyuz TMA-3 launch

The primary crew of ISS-8, which will be launched on this
spacecraft, consists of Russian cosmonaut Alexander Kaleri
(spacecraft commander, ISS-8 flight engineer) and US astronaut
Michael Foale (ISS-8 commander, flight engineer 2 of the
spacecraft). The spacecraft crew also includes a citizen
of Spain, an astronaut of the European Space Agency (ESA)
Pedro Duque (flight engineer 1 of the spacecraft). He is
to work on-board the space station under the program of
visiting mission five (project "Cervantes") and
return to Earth with the crew of ISS-7 on-board Soyuz TMA-2.

The Council of Chief Designers, having reviewed the operational
status of ISS, the readiness status of Soyuz TMA-3 spacecraft,
the progress of Soyuz-FG LV processing, readiness of the
personnel of Russian and US ground processing and mission
control facilities, readiness of the crews of ISS-7, ISS-8
and visiting mission five for carrying out mission plans
of the space station and the spacecraft, and also considering
positive conclusions about spacecraft and space station
readiness, has made a decision to approve the following:

  • results of ISS mission over the period covering April
    to September 2003;
  • results of tests and the plan of upcoming work to prepare
    for launch Soyuz TMA-3 to replace Soyuz TMA-2 on-board
    the station as planned and carry out visiting mission
    five, returning to Earth the crew of ISS-7 (Russian cosmonaut
    Yuri Malenchenko – crew commander, NASA astronaut Edward
    Lu – flight engineer) and Spanish citizen, ESA astronaut
    Pedro Duque;
  • the program of studies and experiments for 194-day
    expedition ISS-8, with crew of two – Russian cosmonaut
    Alexander Kaleri and US astronaut Michael Foale;
  • the program of the 10-day Visiting Mission Five, which
    calls for the flight of ESA astronaut Pedro Duque to perform
    experiments and tests developed by scientists from Russia
    and ESA participating countries, including those within
    the framework of the Cervantes project.

The meeting of the Council was attended by representatives
from Rosaviacosmos, NASA, ESA, companies and organizations
of the space industry that are involved in the project implementsation.

Soyuz TMA-3 is scheduled to be launched on October 18, 2003
at 9 hours 37 minutes Moscow time.