Arlington, VA (USA), March 14, 2002 – Space Adventures, Ltd., the world’s
premier space tourism company, announced today the debut of the Cosmopolis
XXI Aerospace System (C-21), a next-generation spacecraft designed
specifically for sub-orbital space tourist flights. The full-scale model of
the reusable launch vehicle (RLV) was unveiled today at the Zhukovsky Air
Base outside of Moscow, Russia.

“Sub-orbital flights are central to the space tourism industry,” said Eric
Anderson, President and CEO of Space Adventures. “The demand for these
flights already exists, now it is just a matter of developing affordable
aerospace systems like the C-21.”

Developed by the same aerospace company responsible for the design of the
Russian Buran Space Shuttle, Myasishchev Design Bureau (MDB), in
collaboration with the Cosmopolis XXI Suborbital Corporation and Space
Adventures, Ltd., the C-21 is comprised of an RLV and a carrier aircraft,
the M-55X, and uses a two-stage approach to reaching space.

“This is a revolutionary concept that will lead the way towards an entirely
new generation of cheaper, more reliable and fully reusable spacecraft,”
said Valery Novikov, MDB Chief Designer.

The C-21 is one of the spacecraft that will be used exclusively for Space
Adventures’ sub-orbital flights. The rocket-powered C-21 is capable of
flying one pilot and two paying Space Adventures’ clients on a sub-orbital
space flight, reaching altitudes of over 62 miles (100km). At the peak of
its parabolic trajectory, passengers will experience several minutes of
weightlessness and see the Earth from space. Four days of space flight
orientation including centrifuge, zero-gravity and high-altitude jet flight
training, as well as safety and onboard system lessons are expected to be

According to a recent study commissioned by Space Adventures, the
sub-orbital space tourist market could generate revenues of over $1 billion
annually. Space Adventures has over 100 sub-orbital reservations and is
currently accepting bookings for sub-orbital flights departing by 2005 at
$98,000 (U.S.) per seat. Test flights for the C-21 are expected to begin by

Photographs, footage and detailed specifications about the C-21 are
available upon request.

Space Adventures, Ltd., offers a wide range of space experiences, from
zero-gravity and high-altitude supersonic flights, cosmonaut training and
space flight qualification programs on Earth, to actual flights into space.
Space Adventures has provided clients like Dennis Tito and Mark Shuttleworth
with the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to fly to the International Space
Station. With offices in Arlington, Va. and Moscow, Russia, Space Adventures
is developing a U.S.-based spaceport from which passenger sub-orbital space
flights will begin operations before 2005. For more information about Space
Adventures, visit or call 1-703-524-7172.

Cosmopolis XXI
Aerospace Multi-Use System – M-55X and C-21

The Cosmopolis XXI Aerospace System consists of a carrier aircraft, the M-55X, and a manned rocket module, the C-21. The module is a lifting body Reusable Launch Vehicle built around a 3-seat passenger capsule. It also includes an engine unit and an equipment compartment with rescue and environmental control / life support systems.

The rocket module is mounted on top of the M-55 “Geophysika” carrier aircraft. A connection between the carrier and the rocket module provides information on status and efficiency control of all rocket module systems before take off and separation.

The carrier aircraft with the C-21 attached will reach an altitude of 17 kilometers (10.5 miles), and then gather speed to perform a vertical climb maneuver. Once the altitude reaches 20 kilometers, and the trajectory angle reaches 40-60 degrees to the horizon, the locks are disengaged and the rocket module begins to separate from the M-55X. As soon as a safe distance from the carrier aircraft is reached, the C-21¹s rocket engine is ignited automatically. The rocket module then climbs steadily under rocket power, on a gradual trajectory up to maximum altitude, around 100 kilometers (62 miles). Once the rocket engine burns out, it separates from the crew compartment. The C-21 then continues to gain altitude as it passes through Sub-Orbital space.

During the descent phase back to Earth, control surfaces are extended for optimal aerodynamic performance. The landing is divided into the glide-phase and the final parachute-assisted touch down.

Cosmopolis XXI System Specifications

Combined Take off weight: 27,000 kg
M-55X Weight 25,000 kg
Crew 1
Maximum Altitude: 27 km
Maximum Speed: 800 km/h
Max. Flight Duration: 6.5 hours
C-21 Weight: 2,000 kg
Crew / Passengers: 1 / 2
Maximum Altitude: 100 km



Tereza Predescu

Phone: +1 (703) 524-7172


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