Romanian Academic Merit conferred to Dumitru Prunariu and distinguished foreign cosmonauts

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Cosmonauts Dumitru Prunariu (Romania), Leonid Popov (Russian Federation), Alexander Alexandrov (Bulgaria), Russell Schweikcart (USA) and Franz Viehbock (Austria) were conferred on Friday, at the Romanian Academy, the Academic Merit diploma, handed over by the president of the prestigious forum, Ionel Haiduc.

The event took place on the occasion of an homage session to celebrate 50 years since the first flight of a man into outer space and 30 years since the first flight into space of a Romanian cosmonaut, the event being organized by the Section of Technical Sciences and the Romanian Committee of Science and Technology History and Philosophy of the Romanian Academy, in collaboration with the Romanian Spatial Agency and „Science and Technique” review, and held in the Aula of the Romanian Academy.

Attending the event were former Romania’s president Ion Iliescu, Prince Radu of Romania, Russian Federation Ambassador Alexander Ciurilin.

Dumitru Dorin Prunariu was the first Romanian who participated in a space flight (Soyuz 40 mission) under the Intercosmos program, onboard of Saliut 6 station 6 (May 14 to 22 1981), together with Russian cosmonaut Leonid Ivanovich Popov, Prunariu making several scientific experiments, among them an important study of the terrestrial magnetic field.

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