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Italian astronaut says bald people make good astronauts

The crew is gearing up for the next space flight due on July 20, the 50th anniversary of the first manned Moon mission

BAIKONUR /Kazakhstan/, July 19. /TASS/. A bald person has a good chance of becoming an astronaut, member of the International Space Station (ISS) expedition 60/61 Luca Parmitano said during a pre-flight press conference on Friday.

"The best candidate to become an astronaut is the one with no hair on his head," Parmitano said jokingly, adding that they will not make a mess while cutting their hair on a spacecraft. The Italian spaceman himself is bald.

His Russian colleague Alexander Skvortsov pointed out that the main quality for an astronaut is determination.

The Soyuz-FG launch vehicle with the manned Soyuz MS-13 spacecraft is set to blast off from launch site No. 1 (Gagarin’s Start) at the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 7.28 pm Moscow time on July 20. The manned spacecraft will deliver Russian cosmonaut Alexander Skvortsov, NASA astronaut Andrew Morgan and ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Luca Parmitano to the International Space Station (ISS) using a six-hour flight scheme.

Overall, the ISS-60/61 expedition crewmembers are set to carry out almost 50 applied research experiments, five of which will be conducted in an autonomous mode, without the crew’s participation.