Via Space.com, and following up Getting Space Exploration Right reveals a little more real information on Russian’s successor to the Soyuz, called Kliper (or sometimes “Clipper”?), which is way ahead of NASA’s Crew Exploration Vehicle (CEV), with a full scale mockup.
European Space Agency (ESA) is on board to ensure it is adapted for launches from the European space port in Kourou, French Guiana, and are considering further funding the Kliper spacecraft during its meeting in December of 2005. Japan has also expressed interest in joining in on Kliper development.
Space.com has 2 photo’s of the Kliper from the Paris Air Show, but if you what last more here’s a gallery of over 100 images from March 16th 2005 on a Russian Language space new web site (any russian speakers who can tell translate some of this, or at least tell me when and where this happen?), and the Russian Space web site has a great wealth of details on the Kliper.
Question: Doesn’t that last row of seats seem completely upside down for launch? Do the seats orient differently for launch, and then swivel to this position for re-entry? Just asking. (that’s the parachute section above their heads).