South Korea's first astronaut Yi So-Yeon and Russian cosmonauts Sergei Volkov and Oleg Kononenko
South Korea's first astronaut said Monday on the eve of her launch to the International Space Station (ISS) that she will celebrate arrival in space by singing for her fellow crew.
"We will have food on April 12 on the Day of Cosmonauts and I will sing but it's a secret what is the song," Yi So-Yeon, 29, said at a press conference at the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan where she is set to blast off on Tuesday.
Yi, who has listed singing as one of her hobbies, said her first reaction on reaching the ISS would be to cry out: "Wow!"
A South Korean space official said that Yi's 12-day mission would cost South Korea around 20 million dollars (12.8 million euros) and that he hoped the flight would help further his country's manned space flight ambitions.
An official committee gave official approval Monday for the mission by Yi and Russian cosmonauts Sergei Volkov and Oleg Kononenko.
The three astronauts spoke to the press from behind a glass screen at the Hotel Cosmonaut in Baikonur as they are being held in quarantine for fear of being contaminated ahead of their space flight.
Russians celebrate Cosmonaut Day on April 12, the day Soviet hero Yury Gagarin became the first man in space, in 1961. Yi, Volkov and Kononenko will be blasting off from the same launch pad as Gagarin.