After the landing


Twelve minutes past seven o`clock in the morning ZUP-time (05:12 MET) the crews of the first recovery helicopters observed near the city Arkalyk how the landing capsule impigned harder than usual on the ground broading an enormous cloud around itself. The intense wind drove it around like a soccer. When the cloud cleared, they saw the landing machine lying overbalanced on the earth.

A few minutes later Anatoli Arzebarskij, the totaly beat but apparently satisfied Franz Viehboeck and as last Toktar Aubakirov climbed out of the capsule. The three Cosmonauts were sourrounded by their custodians, who convinced themselves from the crew`s well beeing. The first interviews followed: Viehboeck told about his first impressions from the landing, which he called “a hammer”.

A knackered Franz Viehboeck after landing. Photo: BMBWK, Vienna

On of the rituals of space flight was the award of a medal, which the Cosmonauts got a few hours later at the salutation in Star City by an airforce general. Franz Viehboeck and his colleagues were brought to quarantine. A little later he toasted together with Clemes Lothaller from the balcony of the quarantine office to the waiting AUSTROMIR-team and some newsmen and spoke about the datails from his maybee most agitating day in his life.

Clemens Lothaller and Franz Viehboeck in revelry mood one day after the return in Star City. Photo: BMBWK, Vienna

The next months after the flight should not become less straining for Franz Viehboeck, even if the Austrian scientific Cosmonaut and his stand-by had acquired the maybee most exciting phase of the projekt yet. Finally their contract of employment obtained to 1993. Up to this time they had to be available for the sponsors for promotional purposes and for public to inform in line with series of lectures and a multitude of public appearances about the project AUSTROMIR. After the flight they got numerous invitations from schools, universities and private organizers in the federal ministry of science and research, and soon it had to be said: the two Cosmonauts are booked up for months. But first the experimenters asserted their rights. During the return of Clemens Lothaller back to Austria, Franz Viehboeck had to fold a series of reference checkups in the Soviet Union. Those checkups during the Cosmonaut`s acclimatisation phase to gravitation brought a lot of valuable informations for the at the project involved doctors.