WASHINGTON, November 29. /TASS/. The United States’ National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) plans to purchase two seats on Russia’s Soyuz spacecraft for sending astronauts to the International Space Station ISS, as follows from a request uploaded to the government procurement website.
"NASA is considering contracting with the State Space Corporation Roscosmos for these services on a sole source basis for two Soyuz seats and associated services to the International Space Station (ISS) on the Russian Soyuz spacecraft vehicle. This transportation would be for one crewmember in the fall of 2020 and one crewmember in the spring of 2021," the request says.
NASA’s spokesman for ISS affairs Gary Jordan told TASS on November 19 that NASA was going to purchase extra seats on the Soyuz vehicles but did not say how many.
Earlier, Russia’s cosmonauts training center said on its website that the crews of the Soyuz MS-17 and Soyuz MS-18, scheduled to go to the ISS in the autumn of 2020 and spring of 2021 would be entirely Russian. The press-service of Russia’s space corporation Roscosmos then told TASS that the corporation would make a decision soon to reserve seats for NASA astronauts.