Star trek of Oleg Novitsky
Not only his relatives, but his friends, classmates, teachers and acquaintances awaited the moment with bated breath. Along with members of the international crew, they counted down to the launch, watching in awe as the rocket finally ascended into orbit. Breathing once more with relief, we’ve seen that nothing is impossible for our people. Oleg is one in a long line of Belarusians in space
On October 25th, Oleg’s rocket docked with the International Space Station. Over five months, he’ll be working with Russian Yevgeny Tarelkin and American Kevin Ford, conducting over 50 scientific experiments relating to medicine, industry and education. In their free time, the crew plans to photograph and film the Earth’s surface and hopes to create an Internet blog.
During a press conference with the main crew of the MKS-33/34, Oleg admitted that, as a child, he was afraid of the dark, so would make himself gaze at the star-filled sky to overcome his fear. Perhaps, his childhood dream was born from those moments, which must have inspired a yearning to see what lay among those twinkling stars. Before launch, he told us, “I’m sure that many unforgettable feelings lie ahead; it’s frightening to imagine being at the very top of this huge and powerful rocket!”
Belarusians have a special attitude and long tradition regarding space exploration. Before Oleg Novitsky, Belarusians Piotr Klimuk and Vladimir Kovalenok visited the cosmos and the first female astronaut, Valentina Tereshkova, had Belarusian origins. Our country aims to actively explore the universe, having recently launched its own satellite; in late August, the Information Processing Centre received its first pictures. Belarus now has an independent system of remote Earth sensing. “The launch of the Belarusian satellite is wonderful for our country, demonstrating our ultra-modern technologies and showing that Belarus is among the prestigious space powers,” emphasises the Director of the Centre of Information Technologies of the Belarusian State University, Yuri Vorotnitsky.
Belarus is preparing its national space programme for 2013-2017, led by the Presidium of the National Academy of Sciences. Space communications are a priority of the new document.
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