06.06.2011 | ABC TRANSPORTS ‘VOSTOK’ SPACE CAPSULE

The former USSR space capsule ‘Vostok 3KA-2’ has been safely returned to a museum in Russia onboard an AirBridgeCargo Airlines’ B747-400 freighter.

Weighing 5,600 kilos, the capsule was transported from ABC’s European on-line station in Frankfurt on one of the airline’s scheduled flights to its cargo hub at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport. ABC currently operates 12 Boeing 747 all-cargo services a week between the two cities.

The space capsule was produced by the USSR and is of great historical interest for its role in the country’s space exploration programme. ‘Vostok 3KA-2’ went into orbit on the March 25th 1961 - 18 days before cosmonaut Yury Gagarin’s first flight. In the 1990s, the capsule was bought by the American businessman in New York. The return of the space capsule to Russia coincides with the 50th anniversary of the first space flight performed by Yury Gagarin in 1961.

“It is not the first time AirBridgeCargo has been entrusted with carrying such an important and highly sensitive shipment and it once again highlights our expertise in the carriage of special cargo. Being under the umbrella of Volga-Dnepr Group enables us to share its unique expertise from over 20 years of transporting outsize and heavy air cargo and apply this knowledge to our scheduled cargo operation, “said Tatyana Arslanova, Executive President of AirBridgeCargo airlines.

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