Science & Technology

Chess returns to Space after 50 years

By Jose Antonio Diego

Madrid, Jun 8 (efe-epa).- Chess will be returning to the cosmos on Tuesday to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first game between Earth and Space.

Russian chess grandmaster Sergey Karjakin will be representing our planet while cosmonauts Ivan Wagner and Anatoli Ivanishin will make their moves from the International Space Station.

Ivanishin and Wagner, playing as a team, will communicate their play by radio from the orbiting satellite.

Karjakin, a chess prodigy who holds the record for the world’s youngest ever grandmaster, will be on the other side of the board playing from Moscow.

He will be seated in the main hall of the Moscow Museum of Cosmonautics and the game will be live-streamed by the Russian Chess Federation.

Karjakin tweeted on Friday: “4 days left till the very important match with the cosmonauts Anatoly Ivanishin and Ivan Wagner.

“The match is timed precisely to the half-century anniversary of the first Space to Earth game of chess played on June 9, 1970.”

The game will begin at 11am Central European Time on Tuesday to commemorate the first Space-Earth match which took place on the same date and time in 1970.

That match was played between cosmonauts Andriyan Nikolayev and Vitaly Sevastyanov aboard the Soyuz 9 spacecraft with their colleagues Viktor Gorbakto and Nikolai Kamanin in ground control.

It lasted six hours and used a special board specially designed for zero gravity with notches and grooves as it was not possible to use magnetic pieces because they could disturb the on-board instruments.

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