CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — Kelly and Kornienko will launch aboard a Russian rocket from Kazakhstan. Americans must buy seats on Russian spacecraft now that NASA's shuttles have retired to museums, until private U.S. companies have vessels capable of carrying human passengers. That's still four or five years off.
Kelly is a 48-year-old, divorced Navy captain with two daughters. Kornienko, 52, a rocket engineer, is married with a daughter.
"We have chosen the most responsible, skilled and enthusiastic crew members to expand space exploration, and we have full confidence in them," Russian Space Agency chief Vladimir Popovkin said in the announcement.