According to news sources, a 15-year-old boy from a Siberian orphanage known as “Ostovok”, which translates into tiny island, has won the children’s contest to design a spaceship logo. The orphanage is located in the region of Kemerovo in Western Siberia, and the young man who won, Yuri Menkevich, was one many competitors. Anatoliy Perminov, head of the Russian space agency, Roscosmos, approved the logo Menkevich submitted. It will become the emblem for the next Soyuz TMA-15 mission which is scheduled to launch in May.
The logo features a golden angel against a black background supporting the ISS with his outstretched arms with a caption below reading: “Soyuz TMA-15.”
In the words of a spokesman for Roscosmos:
“His patch caught Roman Romanenko’s, the Russian cosmonaut’s, eye and he immediately decided that it would be a perfect match for his next Soyuz crew.”
Launch date for the next space mission is scheduled for May 27, and the crew composed of commander, Russian cosmonaut, Roman Romanenko, and two flight engineers, a Belgian astronaut from the European Space Agency, Frank De Winne and a Canadian astronaut, Robert Thirsk, is slated to wear spacesuits bearing the approved patch. Similar logo-bearing suits will be provided to the backup crew, with no names on them, however. The spacecraft is scheduled to dock with the International Space Station (ISS) two days later and it is due to return to Earth in November 2009.
During the year 2009, it is expected that a total of four manned Soyuz spaceships will be launched to dock with the ISS and all will proudly sport the emblem so lovingly drawn by a 15-year-old boy whose parents unfortunately cannot applaud his talent and achievements.
Here’s to you, Yuri and a wonderful future as a talented artist.