|Российская наука и мир|
(по материалам зарубежной электронной прессы)
Российский ученый Виталий Вальцев создал искусственный мозг, способный состязаться с человеческим.
Искусственный мозг способен принимать решения в соответствии с обстоятельствами и делать выводы из ошибок
A RUSSIAN scientist claims to have developed the first artificial brain armed with the intellectual ability to compete with human beings.
The first "brain-puter" could be so sophisticated that it could make complicated decisions and constantly evolve, like a real biological entity, ultimately ruling over the human beings that invented it. Vitali Valtsev has to put the finishing touches to his "truly thinking machine", a neuro-computer able to outperform all previous models, after 30 years of work.
The new brain uses a model of the neutrons in the human brain. Earlier similar attempts used a model of the neutrons in the spinal cord, which were too mechanical, like computers. Mr Valtsev's creation will be far more sophisticated, he says, able to make judgments according to the circumstances and learn from mistakes.
At the moment the artificial brain exists only as a set of computer commands rather than a tangible object, but Mr Valtsev, a Moscow scientist in his 60s, said yesterday that his invention could evolve into a tyrannical monster.
"This machine needs to be trained like a new-born child. It is extremely important for us to make it a friend and not a criminal or an enemy", he said.
Mr Valtsev swept aside fears that crazed scientists could abuse the brain to their own ends: "One could run the world with this machine. But biologists are too simple-minded to do that", he said.
Mr Valtsev said he had been approached by lawyers, bankers and even the Russian Army, but he is loath to accept financial help because of probable conditions attached.
© Copyright (C) The Times, 2001
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Россия приветствует крупное достижение в создании искусственного мозга
Russian scientists claim to have developed the first artificial brain, a "neuro-computer" with the same intellectual potential as its human counterpart, the Interfax news agency reported last weekend.
The new Russian computer is based on the human brain cell, or neuron, and outstrips previous brain models by using state-of-the-art findings in neurophysiology and neuromorphology to produce a truly thinking machine, scientist Vitaly Valtsev said.
But he warned of the potential hazards of the scientific breakthrough, saying the brand new brain could turn into a Frankenstein monster if mistreated.
Dr. Valtsev, a member of the International Academy of Information Science, told Interfax that Russian scientists succeeded where others had failed because they used a model of the neuron of the brain in building the computer.
Earlier attempts to create artificial intelligence failed because scientists had tried to create a smart machine using a model of the neuron of the spinal cord, which was first developed in the 1940s.
However, others were dubious about the extent of the Russians' findings.
"I really think this is overstated", says Prof. Paul Coleman of the University of Rochester, N.Y.
"[There is so much that] we do not know about how the real brain works, about the sheer numbers of cells and connections.... We're really decades from replicating an adult human brain".
Professor Coleman says the closest we have come to an artificial adult brain so far is through programming general-purpose computers in ways that can learn. For example, the chess-playing machine Deep Blue was able to learn enough from each mistake it made that it eventually was able to beat humans.
©Copyright of Christian Science Monitor is the property of Christian Science Publishing Society
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PR Newswire / 04/23/2001
American Biogenetic Sciences, Inc. Panel Reviews Antibody Technology at International Meeting of Immunologists
В Нью-Йорке с 14 по 17 апреля проходил VII международный конгресс по иммунореабилитации.
Более 1000 ученых, а также иммунологов-теоретиков и клиницистов из сорока пяти стран, в том числе из России, стали участниками этого международного конгресса
COPIAGUE, N.Y., Apr 23, 2001 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ - American Biogenetic Sciences, Inc. announced today that Scientists working with ABS reported data showing that the company's antigen-free (A-F) mice have a significantly stronger immune response to immunization than do germ-free or conventional laboratory mice. Antigen free mice were shown to have a stronger T cell response and IgG antibodies in sera were shown to have three fold higher average affinity. This could lead to more efficient production of monoclonal antibodies due to a better "sound/noise" ratio, especially involving "difficult" antigens, emphasized by Professor Nico Bos of the Department of Cell Biology, University of Groningen, The Netherlands.
The Co-chairman of the Congress, Professor Rem V. Petrov, D.Sc., Vice President of the Russian Academy of Sciences, noted, "Over 1,000 scientists and theoretical and clinical immunologists from forty-five countries attended this international congress. Some of those present were unaware of ABS' antigen-free technology and many remarked on its outstanding potential in the field of immunological research and the production of high affinity and very specific monoclonal antibodies in particular".
The findings were reviewed at the VII International Congress on Immunorehabilitation, New York City (April 14-17, 2001), as part of a roundtable session at which American Biogenetic Sciences and co-investigators detailed features of ABS' antigen-free technology and its clinical potential. The panel was chaired by Company Chairman and CEO Alfred J. Roach and included presentations by:
- James H. McLinden, Ph.D., Senior Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer, ABS
- Nico Bos, Ph.D., Dept. of Cell Biology, University of Groningen, The Netherlands
- David Carville, Ph.D., Cardiovascular Consultant to ABS
Studies conducted by the Department of Cell Biology at the University of Groningen concluded that when research antigens were presented to A-F mice, the A-F mice made more antigen-specific antibodies with higher affinity than did their germ-free and conventional counterparts.
Renowned theoretical and clinical scientists who attended the Conference included Prof. John W. Hadden, Division of Immunopharmacology, Department of Internal Medicine, University of South Florida College of Medicine, Prof.
Michael Sela, Israel, Past President of International Union of Immunological Society, Prof. Alain de Weck, President of the International Association Of Allergology And Clinical Immunology (IAACI), Switzerland.
MH-1, a monoclonal antibody developed with A-F technology, is a sensitive marker for a protein whose levels begin to rise just as a blood clot begins forming. The panel reviewed data that suggests that MH-1 may have utility as a thrombus-seeking drug delivery vehicle for thrombolytics and also anticancer agents designed to shrink tumors and prevent them from spreading.
The antithrombotic utility of this agent for the inhibition/prevention of restenosis following coronary intervention was also discussed. Data from preclinical studies demonstrating this clinical phenomenon were presented.
American Biogenetic Sciences, Inc., based in Copiague, N.Y., researches and develops diagnostic tests for cardio-pulmonary conditions and infectious diseases, as well as for new treatments for neurological disorders including epilepsy, migraine, mania, Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease.
Statements in this press release that are not strictly historical are "forward looking" statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, and should be considered as subject to various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated, including the risk that its products may not be commercialized. For further details and a discussion of these risks and uncertainties, see the Company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings including its annual report on Form 10-K.
© 2001 PR Newswire. All rights reserved
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US Newswire / 04/17/2001
CRDF Announces Continuation and Expansion of Program to Support Scientific Research and Higher Education in Russia
Американский Фонд гражданских исследований и развития (CRDF) объявил о предоставлении гранта 12,5 миллионов долларов для продолжения и расширения программы основных исследований и поддержки высшего образования в России. Новые фонды позволят CRDF продолжать оказывать помощь Российским университетам в их исследовательской работе
WASHINGTON, Apr 17, 2001 (U.S. Newswire via COMTEX) - The U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation (CRDF) is pleased to announce grants totaling $12.5 million for the continuation and expansion of its Basic Research and Higher Education (BRHE) program in Russia. The new funds will allow the CRDF to continue its efforts to improve the research capabilities of Russian universities.
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation awarded the CRDF a five-year continuation grant of $11.5 million; Carnegie Corporation of New York, who is working with the MacArthur Foundation on other investments in Russian higher education, renewed a two-year million-dollar follow-on grant to support the program.
The Russian Ministry of Education, which jointly administers the BRHE program with the CRDF and provides a funding cost share, also renewed its commitment to the program.
The BRHE program's overall objective is to help Russian universities build up their research capabilities and thereby help Russia renew its capacity to train young scientists. The program provides grants of approximately $1 million, on a competitive basis, for the formation of scientific Research and Education Centers (RECs) at universities across Russia.
These centers focus on joint scientific training and research activities with industry and local and international institutions, outreach to local primary and secondary school educators, and competitive funding opportunities for research and education at undergraduate and graduate levels.
The renewed support of the MacArthur Foundation, Carnegie Corporation and Russian Ministry of Education highlights the success of the three-year old BRHE program, which has successfully established eight high quality research centers in Russian universities.
According to Jonathan F. Fanton, president of the MacArthur Foundation, the BRHE program activities correlate with the MacArthur Foundation's mission in that the program seeks to develop a sustainable infrastructure to help ensure the long-term survival of the basic science research community in Russia.
"The MacArthur Foundation has a long term commitment to strengthening and sustaining the type of vibrant, independent, academic communities that are so essential to a healthy democratic society", said Fanton. "By helping build the science research capacity of Russian state universities, the Basic Research and Higher Education program is providing the current generation of scientists a place to continue their work while at the same time providing the next generation of scientists the motivation, training, and leadership they need to build both their research and teaching careers".
Vladimir Filippov, Minister of Education of the Russian Federation, concurred. "Classical university education has always been closely linked to research conducted at the universities", he stated.
"Therefore, the support offered in the framework of the program to a fairly wide range of promising research projects that have been selected in a number of Russian universities will, undoubtedly, play a positive role for the Russian and international scientific community".
Carnegie Corporation President Vartan Gregorian added, "U.S.-Russian programs such as Basic Research and Higher Education ensure the continuation of Russia's strong tradition in scientific and technological research by taking its existing resources and building and expanding on them".
The present MacArthur Foundation and Carnegie Corporation grants, in combination with the Ministry of Education's contribution, will enable the CRDF to build on its success and implement the second phase of the program. Goals for this phase entail the establishment of eight additional RECs in Russia, each of which will be supported by approximately $1 million over three years. The CRDF also plans to administer a variety of activities designed to integrate the RECs and provide the infrastructure that will allow them to become self-sustaining centers of excellence.
The CRDF hopes that by focusing on education and the next generation of scientists and engineers, the program will have a real impact on Russia and beyond. CRDF President and Executive Director Gerson S. Sher said, "Response to the BRHE has so far been very positive and offers significant hope for the long-term survival of the Russian scientific community. We are very anxious to launch into the second phase of the program and to build on our success and partnership with the Russian government and local authorities".
Contributions by the U.S. foundations cover about one half of award costs, with 25 percent provided by the Russian Ministry of Education and the remaining quarter by Russian regional governments, universities, and research institutes.
The U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation for the Independent States of the Former Soviet Union, founded in 1995, is a private, non-profit charitable organization created by the United States Government as an
American response to the declining state of science and engineering in the former Soviet Union (FSU). The CRDF seeks to address this issue by fostering opportunities for collaborative projects between FSU and U.S. researchers.
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation is a private, independent grant making institution dedicated to helping groups and individuals foster lasting improvement in the human condition. The Foundation makes grants through two major integrated programs - Human and Community Development and Global Security and Sustainability - and through the General Program, which undertakes special initiatives and supports projects that promote excellence and diversity in the media, and the MacArthur Fellows Program, which awards fellowships to exceptionally creative individuals, regardless of field of endeavor.
The MacArthur Foundation was one of the first international foundations to begin operations in the former Soviet Union where it has made more than $60 million in grants since 1992.
Founded in 1911 by Andrew Carnegie to promote "the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding", Carnegie Corporation of New York has an endowment of $1.9 billion as of September 30, 2000. The Corporation expects to issue grants of $75 million in the next year in the areas of education, international peace and security, international development and strengthening U.S. democracy.
©Copyright 2001 U.S. Newswire
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Российские ученые заключили соглашение с китайскими бизнесменами.
VLADIVOSTOK, Apr 20, 2001 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) - Researchers of the Far Eastern Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences and Chinese businessmen concluded a cooperation agreement on commercial introduction of advanced technologies.
The document envisages that Russian researchers will choose and recommend the Chinese side their projects which can bring the highest yield when introduced in industry. The Chinese side will be preoccupied with implementing the proposed programmes at companies, forming the Harbin zone of new and advanced technologies.
The presidium of the Far Eastern Branch told Tass on Friday that the document-signing was the result of work of a Russian-Chinese sympoosium held in Vladivostok on April 18-19.
Russian researchers submitted several projects of comprehensive processing of mineral raw materials and industrial waste, oceanic and marine raw materials, artificial growing of scallops, mussels and seaweeds.
Implementation of the agreement will start already early in May when a group of researchers will go to Harbin where they will get acquainted with the industrial base of the zone of high and advanced technologies.
The results of this trip will prompt the first projects which the Russian side will suggest for introduction.
© 1996-2001 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved
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ITAR-TASS / 04/15/2001
Conference workshop on Russo-Turkish relations to open Mon
- By Dmitry Panovkin and Inna Tikhonova
Российско-турецкие отношения: история, современные проблемы и перспективы - тема конференции, которая открывается в Москве 15 апреля
MOSCOW, Apr 15, 2001 (Itar-Tass via COMTEX) - "Russo-Turkish Relations: History, Contemporary Problems and Prospects" is the subject of a two-day conference workshop which opens here on Monday.
The workshop will be attended by major Russian orientalists and prominent scholars from Turkey, Bulgaria, Caspian states, and by representatives of political and diplomatic circles of other countries.
The programme for this international scientific meeting includes reports on a wide range of matters concerning Russo-Turkish relations. Those present are to consider prospects for bilateral relations within the context of existing Eurasian concepts as well as the present-day international situation.
The conference workshop has been organised by the Russian Academy of Sciences' Institute of Oriental Studies, the Asia and Africa Institute attached to Moscow State University, and Istanbul-based Bilgi University.
© 1996-2001 ITAR-TASS. All rights reserved
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PR Newswire/ 04/04/2001
Famous Russian Doctor Opens a Clinic in Beverly Hills: "Accidental Side Effect" is a By-Product of Unique Sadkhin Complex Approach
Известный российский доктор открывает клинику в Беверли Хиллз
BEVERLY HILLS, Calif., Apr 4, 2001 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ - Weight loss was merely an unintended "accidental" side-effect that happens to occur with Russian scientist Grigory Sadkhin's lauded longevity & wellness training program. You just can't help but notice how fast you lose weight, without feeling hungry. A lot of weight: an average of two pounds a day for those who were severely overweight.
Dr. Sadkhin, a cardiologist in Russia, led the legendary team that extensively studied the secrets of living to a ripe old age in 106 year-old villagers in the former Russian republic of Georgia. Sadkhin emigrated to the United States to establish an alternative/integrative health education center in the late 1980s.
Evidently, Sadkhin's reputation for miraculous weight loss outcomes had preceded him: patients literally couldn't wait till he unpacked his luggage. Since it was so astonishingly easy to lose weight on his program, word quickly spread around New York about it as an alternative to gastric bypass surgery. Today, devotees come to The Sadkhin Complex from all over the world to benefit from his unique approach. The eminent Dr. Sadkhin himself currently sees more than 11,000 patients a year in their East Coast Sadkhin Complex clinic!
Now, the second Sadkhin Complex center has opened on the West Coast in Beverly Hills, California.
Dr. Sadkhin pioneered a distinct approach to health and attaining peak performance which coalesces Chinese, Greek, Tibetan, Vietnamese, Japanese and Egyptian beliefs with modern medical research. His methods involve synthesizing toxin-flushing/internal cleansing, proper nutrition & dietary habits, Tsubo-therapy (a form of self-directed acupressure), deep breathing yoga & Qi-gong exercises along with his patented "Chrono-Herbology" supplementation program.
The Sadkhin Complex program has proven to have unrivaled effectiveness that was fundamentally intended to extend beyond weight loss. Within a matter of days, people are able to rid themselves of diabetes and blood pressure medications. After completing a 30-day course, conditions such as asthma, psoriasis, eczema, depression (among others) begin to markedly improve.
For patients who want to stay slender and ensure that they maintain their weight-loss, there is a recommended eating plan plus a cleansing regimen that includes periodic (bi-annual is advised) practitioner visits and optional herbal & vitamin supplements designed to help retain systemic balance. "Ultimately, your entire body, particularly those internal filtering and digestive organs like the kidneys and liver, becomes stabilized", says Dr. Sadkhin, "and it's really quite easy to remain at your desired weight".
The Sadkhin Complex Beverly Hills is located on 436 North Roxbury Drive, Suite #110; the telephone number is (310) 777-7778. The New York center can be reached at (800) SADKHIN. More information on the various educational curricula is found on the Sadkhin.com website. Weight loss programs begin with an initial assessment & consultation (cost of which gets included in the ongoing program payment plan). Dr. Sadkhin is available for media commentary and interviews; for press information contact MediaFix at (818) 883-7144
© 2001 PR Newswire. All rights reserved
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ФСБ обвиняет российского ученого из Красноярска в передаче секретной технологии Китаю.
The Federal Security Service said Wednesday that it has charged a Krasnoyarsk scientist with treason for passing secret technology to China that could help it develop spacecraft. His colleagues, however, said the technology has long been declassified and no secrets were given to the Chinese. The only threat to Russia's national interest, they said, has been caused by the FSB's arrest of the scientist and the disruption of a beneficial contract.
Valentin Danilov, head of the Thermal Physics Center of the Krasnoyarsk Technical University, was arrested and jailed Feb. 16, according to his colleagues, who published an open letter to the Krasnoyarsk prosecutor in the local press Wednesday.
A number of scientists have been arrested or come under pressure from the FSB in recent years after cooperating with foreign firms or organizations. Researchers involved in military-related issues say one problem is that the guidelines regulating their work are vague.
Stella Alexeyeva, spokeswoman for the Krasnoyarsk branch of the FSB, confirmed that a local scientist was jailed Feb. 16 on charges of state treason. She refused to confirm it was Danilov or that the country involved was China.
She said the suspect passed along classified data on satellite technology that would allow foreign countries to save time and money in developing spacecraft. This damaged Russia's "external security", she said in a telephone interview.
Interfax, citing FSB sources, said Danilov agreed to sell the China Precision Machine-Building Export and Import Co. a scientific method used to forecast the electromagnetic environment around satellites.
Alexeyeva said the local FSB branch opened an investigation into the alleged leak of classified data on satellite technology last May. Until early this year, the suspect remained accused of disclosing a state secret. FSB investigators decided to charge him with state treason in February. Under the Criminal Code, state treason is considered a grave crime and suspects may be held until the case is heard in court. Alexeyeva said her colleagues hope to complete the investigation and send the case to court by the end of this year. If convicted, Danilov could spend from 12 to 20 years in prison.
News of Danilov's arrest reached Moscow on Wednesday when 20 of his colleagues published an open letter to Krasnoyarsk regional prosecutor Ivan Borisenko asking him to release the scientist.
They said all of the information Danilov passed to the Chinese company was declassified in 1992. Moreover, some of the data was described in open publications even back in Soviet days when used by the Krasnoyarsk Scientific Production Association of Applied Mechanics.
"The sale of 20-year-old technologies allows for the funding of further research that would be above the present level of world science", the letter said. The contract with the Chinese company was signed two years ago and is worth $366,000, RTR television reported. Under the contract, Danilov and his colleagues are to create a model for testing the influence of electromagnetic waves on satellites, the report said.
His lawyer Yelena Yevmenova said in televised remarks that Danilov revealed no state secrets and the contract involved only previously published information. His colleagues warned that China could easily turn to another country for similar technology and Russia could lose a good contract.
"Hence, the FSB branch is actually doing harm to the state", the letter said.
The letter ended with an appeal for Danilov's immediate release and a fair and open trial. His colleagues said Danilov's health has deteriorated since he's been in jail and they offered to guarantee he will not flee if released pending trial. Danilov's colleagues at the Krasnoyarsk Technical University could not be reached by telephone Wednesday. Calls to the press service of the Chinese Embassy in Moscow went unanswered.
Danilov's is the latest in a series of espionage cases opened against scientists and researchers in Russia.
A court in Kaluga in central Russia is currently hearing a case against Igor Sutyagin, a researcher at the U.S.A. and Canada Institute, who is charged with passing military secrets to the United States and Britain. Sutyagin denies the charges. He was arrested by the FSB in October 1999. Some researchers, such as Pavel Podvig, an expert on Russia's military space program, have chosen to flee Russia before the FSB could charge them. Podvig left Russia after the FSB raided his Moscow office and confiscated his computer in 1998.
FSB also tried two former naval officers Grigory Pasko and Alexander Nikitin on charges of providing secret information to foreign organizations about nuclear waste at Russian naval facilities. They were acquitted in separate cases.
© Copyright 2001 THE MOSCOW TIMES. All rights reserved.
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Российский ученый обвинен в шпионаже в пользу Китая.
MOSCOW, Apr 18, 2001 (AP WorldStream via COMTEX) - Russia's Federal Security Service has accused a Russian physicist with spying for China, a spokeswoman for the agency said Wednesday.
The security agency accused Valentin Danilov, a researcher at Krasnoyarsk Technical University and a specialist in the space field, of selling research materials to a Chinese import-export company, said Stella Alexeyeva, a spokeswoman for the Federal Security Service branch in Krasnoyarsk. Danilov was arrested on Feb. 16, she said.
Alexeyeva declined to name the Chinese company. Security officials began investigating Danilov's relations with the company in May, she said.
Danilov, who is being held in a jail in Krasnoyarsk, will stand trial later this year when the service wraps up its investigation, Alexeyeva said. The 20-year veteran of the institute faces a prison term from 12 to 20 years if convicted of espionage, she said.
Danilov's lawyers said the scientist didn't violate Russian laws as he provided information that was already published in open scientific journals, according to television news reports.
Also, about 20 of the scientist's colleagues have sent the Krasnoyarsk regional prosecutor an open letter asking for Danilov to be freed and for open court hearings to begin, the ITAR-Tass news agency said.
The scientists said that security officials had declassified Danilov's research into the effects of space on satellites in 1992, and it was already available in open publications. They said that Danilov didn't sell the information under the deal with Chinese company, but was simply asked to create a scientific exhibit depicting his research, the ITAR-Tass said.
The Federal Security Service said he tried to sell a scientific method used to predict the electromagnetic environment around satellites, the Interfax news agency reported.
The accusation is the latest in a long string of spy scandals in Russia. The Federal Security Service, the main successor agency to the KGB, has a case pending against a researcher with the Moscow-based Institute for USA and Canada for allegedly spying for a NATO country.
© Copyright 2001 Associated Press, All rights reserved
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Boeing Corp и Российское аэрокосмическое агентство подписали долгосрочное соглашение о сотрудничестве.
MOSCOW - Boeing Corp. and the Russian Aerospace Agency signed a long-term contract Friday that may lead to joint aviation and aerospace projects that one analyst says could be worth billions of dollars.
The international partnership, engineered by Boeing Chief Executive Officer Philip M. Condit, gives the American aerospace giant a strong entree into Russian and European markets andprovides Russia with a hefty infusion of U.S. capital.
Projects include jointly producing regional aircraft, expanding air routes over the North Pole and starting a land-based satellite launch program.
Condit outlined the arrangement Friday at a Moscow news conference, but declined to estimate its value. An independent aerospace analyst, Brett Lambert of DFI International, a defense consulting firm in Washington, said the projects could generate billions of dollars.
Lambert said the contract marries Boeing's stature in the aerospace industry with an underused but highly skilled pool of Russian scientific brainpower. Russia's aerospace and aviation industry has foundered as the country's economy has declined.
Yuri Koptev, general director of the Russian Aerospace Agency, said at a signing ceremony Friday that Boeing and Russia will collaborate on scores of projects, beginning with research and feasibility studies. Boeing already has a research center in Moscow and employs more than 500 technicians in seven Russian cities.
Among the projects is a relatively low-cost 50- to 100- seat regional commercial airliner to answer a growing demand for small, short-haul aircraft in Europe and Asia. Deputy Prime Minister Ilya Klebanov said the plane would be developed within five years and produced in Russia.
The Boeing-Russian partnership also envisions a land-based satellite-launching program similar to a sea-based program among Boeing, Russia and Ukraine. Known as Sea Launch, satellites are lifted into orbit from a converted offshore drilling platform near the equator. The ground-based program will launch from Russia's Baikonur Cosmodrome in the Kazakhstan desert.
Boeing also will help Russia develop airports in northern Russia and Siberia for expanded routes across the North Pole that will shave hours off international flights.
Boeing has well-established ties in Russia as the dominant contractor for the International Space Station, primarily a U.S.- Russia undertaking. The company opened its Moscow research center in 1993 to focus on commercial aviation, and it jointly conducts aerospace research with the Russian Academy of Sciences.
Russian space officials bestowed Condit Friday with the Russian Space Star, a top award for aerospace achievement. He was the first foreigner to receive the honor.
Lambert said the contract effectively pre-empts Boeing's European competitors from making serious inroads into the Russian market. Boeing's biggest European competitor, Airbus Industries, has sought to woo Russian business with little success, he said.
Aerospace experts described the initiative as an ambitious effort typical of Condit's aggressive leadership style. Trying to reinvigorate Boeing, Condit is pushing innovations such as a proposed sonic plane, which would fly just below the speed of sound, and is moving the company's headquarters from Seattle to a more central location in the nation's interior.
The new headquarters will be in Dallas-Fort Worth, Denver or Chicago. Judith Muhlberg, Boeing's vice president for communications, said the company will make a decision in May and move its trimmed-down, 500-employee headquarters by September.
© 2001, Knight Ridder/Tribune Information Services
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К 2020 году Россия предполагает отправить экспедицию на Марс.
Russia has overcome all main obstacles to manned interplanetary flight and should be ready to send human beings to Mars "in the second decade of this century", the head of a once-secret space science institute has claimed.
Fifteen years of trial and error aboard the Mir space station have given Russia unmatched experience in choosing, training, feeding and supporting the crews of space flights lasting a year or more, Anatoli Grigoriev said. They has also yielded vital information on keeping crew members sane 280 million miles away. Even American experts believe that the Russians have a lead in dealing with extended periods of weightlessness and the psychological problems of orbiting rather than flying away from Earth.
"Our engineers believe we can do this by 2020 and, from a medical point of view, there are no big hurdles left to hinder such a mission", Professor Grigoriev said. He startled the space science world earlier this month with a prediction that Russia would dispatch a crew to Mars as early as 2016.
The forecast raised eyebrows not only because Mir - and with it the core of Moscow's manned space exploration programme - had plunged into the South Pacific a few days earlier, but also because, with a projected GDP for 2001 of $331 billion ($54 billion less than The Netherlands), Russia is ill-equipped to finance an expedition that Nasa estimates could cost $400 billion (Pounds 280 billion).
However, President Putin has since marked the fortieth anniversary of Yuri Gagarin's first space flight with a promise to restore some of Russia's prestige as a space power and Professor Grigoriev has said that Russia will
produce a detailed plan for a manned Mars mission by 2005.
Russia's road to Mars begins in Professor Grigoriev's office. From it he runs the Institute of Biomedical Problems of the Russian Academy of Sciences, founded in 1963 by the legendary Sergei Korolyev, the architect of the Soviet Union's early space triumphs, specifically to prepare for interplanetary flight.
The institute was given its bland name to confuse foreigners. From behind its grey gates and barbed wire perimeter, it still offers outsiders no clue as to its real purpose, yet it is widely acknowledged as the world's largest store of expertise on surviving weightlessness, cosmic radiation and the extreme psychological stress of long-duration space travel.
This expertise includes unique research on human blood and hormone changes in zero gravity, but also homespun recommendations on how to deal with unruly or unstable crew members (in extremis, isolate them), and on maintaining a proper diet by growing vitamins and fresh vegetables in an interplanetary greenhouse resembling a giant aluminium snail shell. The professor's computers contain data gathered over several decades that exists nowhere else but may prove vital for keeping humans alive on a two to three-year round trip to Mars.
Mir, on which cosmonauts set space flight records that are unlikely to be broken for several years, has given Russia unrivalled experience in recycling drinking water via sweat and urine. Ten Soviet-built "biosatellites" operated by the institute have shown how Japanese quail could be bred for meat and eggs in interplanetary aviaries.
"Russia can offer a complete medical support system for a mission to Mars", the professor said. "This is recognised not just here but also in Houston". Other Russian experts have claimed Moscow could mount a manned Mars expedition for as little as $10 billion - a tiny fraction of Nasa's estimates, but still a vast sum for a crippled economy.
No date has been set or even suggested by Nasa for putting an astronaut on Mars. The closest the American agency has come is to promise to bring a Martian soil sample back to Earth by 2014.
© Copyright The Times, 2001
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