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Monday, 25 March, 2002, 20:42 GMT
US pop star eyes space
Lance Bass (far-right) is used to wearing unusual outfits
Pop stars are used to rollercoaster rides - enduring the ups and downs of stardom - but now boy band member Lance Bass may be able to make the ultimate journey.

Lance Bass (right) talks with Jim McDonald of RadioShack during the tests in Russia
Bass (right) says space travel is his lifelong dream
A member of American band N'Sync, the 22-year-old wants to visit the international space station, possibly as soon as this autumn.

Mr Bass has been undergoing tests in Moscow to see whether he is fit enough to make the journey.

If successful, he could follow in the footsteps of Dennis Tito, who last year became the world's first space tourist by paying $20m to travel to the international space station in a Russian rocket.

The British-based South African businessman Mark Shuttleworth also plans to become a space tourist next month.

Space dream

The pop-star's trip would apparently be paid for by an American film company.

Dennis Tito
Tito paid $20m to become the world's first space tourist
He says travelling into space would fulfil a lifelong dream.

Russian officials confirmed that Lance Bass took the initial tests, but said they have not yet received an official application.

"We have not yet had any negotiations with Lance Bass," spokesman for the Russian space agency Rosaviakosmos, Konstantin Kreidenko, told the French news agency, AFP.

If he passes his tests and is approved by the Russian space agency, Mr Bass could be in space by the end of the year.

Russian space officials have said they are considering several tourist candidates to visit the International Space Station (ISS) in Autumn. He would be the first pop star to make the journey.

See also:

04 Apr 02 | Sci/Tech
Space tourist rebuts criticism
02 May 01 | Sci/Tech
Space tourists queue up
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