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TODAY IN SPACE HISTORY – 15 July 1975: U.S. and Soviet crews launch, destined for the first international meeting in space: Apollo-Soyuz Test Project.


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ATV-2 / MagISStra flown cover – Umberto Cavallaro – ASITAF AD*ASTRA N° 12 – March 2012

On February 28th we had the pleasure of presenting to the Italian astronaut Paolo Nespoli the folder containing one of the covers which ATV-2 carried last year to the ISS. Paolo Nespoli had personally recovered from the ATV the covers which were then signed by him and the by the other 5 members of the Expedition 26-27: Dmitry Kondratyev, Cady Coleman, Andrey Borisenko, Alexander Samokutyaev and Ron Garan.

Besides the ISS octagonal board “seal”, Nespoli also put on the cover his personal MagISStra hand stamp, which after the mission has been made unserviceable.

“The AS.IT.AF. flown and signed cover is presented in an elegant folder designed by our member the artist  Alec Bartos and is reserved for the AS.IT.AF. members only. ”


As at the end of each year, at the last meeting of the National Philatelic Commission a topic on the agenda was choosing the most beautiful postage stamps issue of 2011 and postage stamp which will represent Romania at international competitions in 2012.

Considering the artistic conception of the design, their originality and personalization, the harmonization of colors and the correlation with printer requirements, following the proposals from the Commission members, were agreed the following postage stamps issues:

1st place


Designer:  Vlad Vamasescu

The 2nd place was awarded to Alec Bartos for his exceptional design of the COSMOS 2011 souvenir sheet.

Dumitru Dorin Prunariu

The complete “COSMOS 2011” stamp issue – images, technical characteristics and other details here.


3rd place

Designer: Razvan Popescu

Article source:


Related to the Cosmos 2011 stamp issue see: postage stamps issue COSMOS 2011 presented at the Romanian Academy 13.05.2011

IAA 2011 Planetary Defense Conference –  introducing into circulation the postage stamps Cosmos 2011My latest stamp design presentation


Search Continues for Secret Stamp Honoring John Glenn’s Historic Spaceflight – by Robert Z. Pearlman, Editor

The 1962 4-cent “Project Mercury” stamp marked the first time that the U.S. issued a previously unannounced commemorative stamp at the same time as the event it was issued to honor. (cS)

The above cover was cancelled on the first day of issue fifty years ago. The cachet designs is made by me (Alec Bartos) in 2008 in an tirage of only two coves. As a custom commissioned cachets for Mr. Ben Ramkissoon. I have remade the cachet handmade. See below:
February 20, 2012– Fifty years ago Monday (Feb. 20), John Glenn, the first American to orbit the Earth, relied on ground stations located across the planet to communicate with his control team. But after his Mercury spacecraft, Friendship 7, safely splashed down, it was another type of station that took over tracking his historic mission: U.S. post offices.For the first and only time in the country’s postal history, the United States Post Office Department — since 1971, the U.S. Postal Service — surprised the public with the release of a secret stamp celebrating Glenn’s successful mission. The 4-cent “Project Mercury” postage stamp was revealed and immediately put on sale in 305 post offices within an hour of Glenn’s triumphant return to Earth at 2:43 p.m. EST (1943 GMT) on Feb. 20, 1962. Half a century later, collectors are still searching for those first-day-of-issue stamps.
above: detail of Ramkissoon’s cover

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year !


Yeni yılınızı kutlar, sağlık ve başarılar dileriz!
С Рождеством Христовым С наступающим Новым Годом!
Natale hilare et annum faustum!
Честита Коледа Щастлива Нова Година!
Жаңа жыл құтты болсын!
חג מולד שמח ושנה טובה
Gëzuar Krishtlindjet e Vitin e Ri!
Veselé vánoce a šťastný nový rok!
Joyeux Noël et bonne année!
Feliz Natal e próspero ano novo!
क्रस्मसको शुभकामना तथा नयाँ वर्षको शुभकामना
メリークリスマス 明けましておめでとうございます
Buon Natale e felice anno nuovo!
Kellemes karácsonyt és boldog új évet!
Καλά Χριστούγεννα!
Fröhliche Weihnachten und ein gutes neues Jahr!
Prettige kerstdagen en een Gelukkig Nieuwjaar!
Cărciun hărios şi ti mulţă-anji Anlu Nàù!

Шинэ жилийн баярын мэнд хvргэе!

أجمل التهاني بمناسبة الميلاد و حلول السنة الجديدة
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year !


42 years ago, on July 20, 1969, Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to step foot on another heavenly body.

Armstrong emerged from the spacecraft first. While descending, he released the Modularized Equipment Stowage Assembly (MESA) on which the surface television camera was stowed, and the camera recorded humankind’s first step on the Moon at 109:24:19 GET.

The astronauts carried out a planned sequence of activities that included deployment of a Solar Wind Composition experiment, a Laser-Ranging Retroreflector and a Passive Seismic Experiment Package; also collecting samples of lunar material and photographing terrain. While Armstrong and Aldrin completed their tasks on the lunar surface, command module pilot Michael Collins kept vigil in the Columbia module orbiting above.

The three reunited and landed safely in the Pacific Ocean four days later.

For more info:

Cover flown to the moon with Apollo 11.

DL stationery envelopes designed by me for the 40th anniversary of Apollo 11

My private FDC (self adhesive printed cachet) for Apollo 11 designed stamps (2009) see

Alec Bartos – Soviet’s International Manned Spaceflights – Gold Medal with jury congratulations and Best In The Class award (Venice 2011), Large Gold and Best in The Class (Milan 2013) astrophilatelic exhibit

For high quality images I have uploaded large files, so please be patient until the full album is loading.


Comments and suggestions are always welcomed.

Romanian Post organizes on 14th of May, 11:00 am, at the National Philatelic Museum, the exhibition “Cosmonautics Events – Anniversary 2011”




Alec cosmonaut


Me in kindergarten.

Cosmonauts and astronauts autographs of Dumitru Dorin Prunariu, Leonid Popov, Valery Tokarev, Franz Viehböck, Aleksandr Panayotov Aleksandrov, Russell Louis “Rusty” Schweickart, Bertalan Farkas, Ronnie Walter Cunningham and his wife Dot Cunningham

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art • space • philately

I would like to discuss any opportunities for projects that implies art, space and/or philately.