UK & World News

  • 7 May 2014, 20:31

Soviet Space Capsule Goes For Astronomical Price

A capsule that carried three cosmonauts during the Soviet-US space race has been sold for one million euros (£820,000) at auction.

An unidentified European buyer outbid the competition via telephone, German auction house Lempertz said.

The capsule carried three cosmonauts into space during the 1970s and is an important relic of Soviet advances during the Cold War.

Lempertz billed the lot as the first spacecraft to enter space twice - in 1977 and 1978.

Its estimate ahead of the auction in Brussels had been between 700,000 and 1.4m euros (£570,000 and £1.1m).

A British company first bought the 2.2-metre-high capsule.

It was restored and the burn marks collected on re-entry to the earth's atmosphere were removed.

The capsule is known as Vozvrashchayemyi Apparat, which translates to "re-entry capsule".                 

Two spacesuits also went under the hammer.

One, worn by Anglo-American astronaut Michael Foale to reach the ISS international space station aboard a Soyuz in 2003, sold for 70,000 euros (£57,000).

The other was used by cosmonaut Alexander Kalery for a flight to the MIR station in 1996 and fetched 63,000 euros (£52,000).