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Mir, Mir--In the Sky...
News story originally written on January 12, 1999

...How long will he have to fly?

Cosmonaut Sergei Avdeyev is expected to remain aboard the Mir space station for an extra 99 days because of money problems within the Russian government.

On February 20th, Russia is expected to launch a Soyuz capsule with two foreign passengers and a Russian commander. The capsule only holds three people so there isn't any room for Avdeyev to return. The financially-strapped government can't bump either of the foreigners--they're paying for the ride.

The United States no longer maintains a presence on Mir. Russia had planned to retire Mir to focus on building the International Space Station. Funding problems for Russian components have delayed constructions of the ISS by over a year.

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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA