Moscow: A Russian woman cosmonaut may fly to the International Space Station in 2013, a top official has said.
Federal space agency Roscosmos chief Vladimir Popovkin said cosmonaut Yelena Serova, the first woman cosmonaut of the post-Soviet era, should be trained and prepared for a flight lasting up to 170 days.
Alexei Krasnov, director of Roscomos manned flight programmes, said the flight could take place some time in 2013, as it takes at least two and a half years to prepare a crew.
Serova said she had always dreamed of making a space flight, adding that her husband, also a cosmonaut, and their nine-year-old daughter approved of her decision.
The world`s first woman cosmonaut, Soviet citizen Valentina Tereshkova, flew into space on board the Vostok 6 June 16, 1963.
The second woman in space, Svetlana Savitskaya, also from the Soviet Union, blasted off 19 years later in 1982.
According to media reports, a total of 31 women have already visited the ISS.