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MirCorp Negotiating With Itali-Mir For November Flight

MirCorp is in discussions with Itali-Mir, an Italian company, to send Carlo Vibert to Mir as a guest cosmonaut. Itali-Mir still has to raise money to pay the US$20 million fare. Itali-Mir is discussing sponsorships with Italian companies such as Benetton Group, Luxottica Group and the Mediaset broadcasting group. The mission could also provide publicity for the 2006 Olympics to be held in Turin. 

The proposed mission would launch in November and last two months. Itali-Mir must make a down payment of up to 15 percent of the mission cost by the end of June.

Itali-Mir is considering having culturally focused radio and TV shows broadcast from the station including shows where the cosmonauts interact with students. Product promotions might include having Italian cheeses incorporated into the cosmonaut's diets and information about products that use technology spun off from space applications. Luxottica sunglasses, for example, utilize the UV protection technology found in the cosmonaut's space helmets. The clothing line could be made from highly stain resistant Teflon-based fabrics. Some funding for Itali-Mir is coming from the Health Department of Piedmont, which is putting up US$50,000 - US$60,000 in support of a voice-control computer project. Another proposed on-board experiment is to study the effects of Vitamin K, which can help prevent bone loss, a problem faced by cosmonauts and by many older citizens.

MirCorp acts as a facilitator, beginning with the establishment of business conditions for Mir's use, and continuing through successful completion of a user's activity on board the station.


Copyright 2001 - Andrews Space & Technology
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May 29, 2000

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