Foreign Programs

Experiments under Marco Polo Program

January 31, 2002, saw the signing of an agreement between Rosaviacosmos, European Space Agency (ESA), Italian Space Agency and S.P.Korolev Rocket and Space Corporation Energia about a flight of an Italian/ESA astronaut Roberto Vittori to the Russian Segment of ISS as the Flight Engineer of Visiting Crew 3.
Marco Polo program envisages 23 sessions for 4 biomedical experiments.
Three of the experiments (CHIRO, VEST, ALTEINO) are conducted by the Italian Space Agency, and one (BMI) by the European Space Agency.

Experiments under Marco Polo Program

"HIRO" Crew health study from the standpoint of a possible reduction in their working capacity
"VEST" Functional in-orbit test of a new integrated crew garment system
"ALTEINO" An investigation of space radiation effects on the functional state of the central nervous system and an operator's working capacity
"BMI" A study of vegetative regulation of arterial pressure and heart rate

Also covered by this contract is a ground medical experiment NG FAKTOR performed before and after R.Vittori's flight to ISS RS.

Marco Polo Program needs the following resources to be implemented:


Cargo delivered to ISS RS on board

  • logistics vehicle Progress M1-8
  • manned transport vehicle Soyuz TM-34



10.40 kg
12.15 kg

22.55 kg

Materials with the results of the space experiments to be returned to Earth in the Soyuz TM-33 descent vehicle
7.00 kg
40 W
Maximum during a session
up to 100 W
Visiting Crew 3 Flight Engineer R.Vittori
32 h 45 m
Visiting Crew 3 Commander Yu.Gidzenko
10 h 50 m


43 h 35 min