Russian Cosmonaut Celebrates His 50th Anniversary in Outer Space

Russian cosmonaut Nikolai Budarin on Tuesday marked his 50th anniversary in outer space. April 29 is a usual working day in orbit, Valery Lyndin, leading expert at the mission control center, told a RIA Novosti correspondent. The 7th permanent crew that has arrived at the space station is taking over the watch from the 6th crew, of which Budarin is a member, and there is much work in the process.

Nonetheless, both crews, Lyndin said, will definitely find time for celebrating the birthday of their colleague. The 7th crew brought him presents from relations and friends.

Budarin will also be given an opportunity to talk on a radiophone with his wife Marina and sons Dmitry and Vladislav, Lyndin said.

The cosmonaut will evidently celebrate his good round figure in a bigger way at home, after the sixth expedition will land in the Russian Soyuz TMA-1 spaceship on July 4. The expedition spent two extra months in orbit because of the crash of the U.S. Columbia shuttle, Lyndin said.

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