Marcos Cesar Pontes (born March 11, 1963) is a Brazilian Air Force pilot, engineer, AEB astronaut and author. He became the first South American and the first Lusophone to go into space when he launched into the International Space Station aboard Soyuz TMA-8 on March 30, 2006. He is the only Brazilian to have completed the NASA astronaut training program, although he switched to training in Russia after NASA's Space Shuttle program encountered problems.
Soyuz TMA-7 begins Expedition 12 by carrying 3 astronauts and cosmonauts to the International Space Station. Russian Commander, cosmonaut Valery Tokarev alongside Flight Engineers, William McArthur (NASA) & spaceflight participant Gregory Olsen (Space Adventures) will launch aboard the Soyuz spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan and then rendezvous with the station. It landed on April 8, 2006, 23:48:00 UTCLow Earth Orbit
Soyuz TMA-8 begins Expedition 13 by carrying 3 astronauts and cosmonauts to the International Space Station. Russian Commander, cosmonaut Pavel Vinogradov alongside Flight Engineers, Jeffrey Williams (NASA) & spaceflight participant Marcos Pontes (Space Adventures) will launch aboard the Soyuz spacecraft from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan and then rendezvous with the station. It landed on September 29, 2006, 01:13 UTCLow Earth Orbit
The Brazilian Space Agency is a space agency in South America. They work in partnership with the US and Russia aboard the ISS. It was previously operated by the military until 1994. They now operate largely in tandem with other nations. They run a spaceport and rocket launch site both in Brazil. They built the VLM small satellite launch system in tandem with Germany. The VLS-1 was intended to be a primary launch vehicle for the BSA, but it failed 3 times and was canceled. They have restarted work on the system in tandem with the Russian Space Agency.