BAIKONUR /Kazakhstan/, December 8. /TASS/. The sole woman in the team of Russian cosmonauts, Anna Kikina, will go on her first space mission in 2022, and the odds are she may fly aboard the United States’ Crew Dragon, Roscosmos CEO Dmitry Rogozin said on Wednesday.
"Our cosmonaut Anna Kikina will presumably go on a space mission in 2022. We believe that she may take a seat aboard the US spacecraft, while we in turn will put a US astronaut in space by our Soyuz under an exchange program," Rogozin said.
He hopes that Kikina will be successful as a goodwill ambassador, too.
"Our charming space lady will have the honor to inaugurate our space exchange flights program," he remarked.
At the end of October Rogozin said the Crew Dragon spacecraft from Elon Musk’s SpaceX company had been tested well enough for allowing Russian cosmonauts to use them under a flight exchange program. Roscosmos’s executive director for crewed space programs Sergey Krikalyov later told TASS that Russian cosmonauts would start using Crew Dragons, and US astronauts, Russia’s Soyuz vehicles on flight swap terms no earlier than the autumn of 2022.