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Cosmonauts Take Olympic Torch into Open Space
November 10, 2013

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The Olympic Torch has gone into space.

Two cosmonauts carried the Olympic Torch into open space as part of the relay for the 2014 Winter Olympics, which begin in February, in Sochi, Russia. Oleg Kotov and Sergei Ryazansky took turns holding the torch outside the International Space Station. The torch was not lit.

Russian state television and NASA's Internet TV channel broadcast live video of the torch-holdings.

A three-person international crew (made up of an American, a Japanese, and a Russian) carried the torch to the station aboard a Soyuz rocket a few days before the showcase event. It was the third time that an Olympic torch had been aboard spacecraft (1996 and 2000) but the first time that the torch had been in open space.

The 2014 Winter Olympic Games run from February 7 to February 23, featuring 98 events in 15 sports. It will be Russia's first time to host the Winter Games. The mascots are the amur leopard, the European hare, and the polar bear.


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