Wednesday, 14 November, 2018

NASA astronaut, Russian cosmonaut make emergency landing on earth

Cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin and NASA astronaut Nick Hague at the pre-launch ceremony in Kazakhstan Cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin and NASA astronaut Nick Hague at the pre-launch ceremony in Kazakhstan
Doris Mccormick | 12 October, 2018, 18:33

The crew, which was travelling to the International Space Station, is reportedly safe and in "good condition" after the scary failure was broadcast on the web. The probe would seek to determine whether safety regulations had been violated during construction, leading to massive damage, the Russian Investigative Committee said in a statement.

It was the first time that the Soyuz - the main workhorse of manned space flight today - had failed on a launch to the 20-year-old International Space Station.

"An accident with the booster, two minutes, 45 seconds", the voice of Ovchinin could be heard saying calmly in live-streamed footage of the launch from Kazakhstan's Baikonur cosmodrome.

In a series of photos, Mr Gerst captured the moment a Russian Soyuz rocket malfunctioned at the start of what should have been a routine six-hour flight to deliver two astronauts to the ISS.

The emergency Thursday began about two minutes into the flight, when computers onboard the Soyuz capsule detected a problem with the rocket's second stage.

"What we usually do is one group comes up and another group comes down just as part of our regular crew rotation", NASA spokeswoman Kathryn Hambleton said.

Now, American companies SpaceX and Boeing are working to launch their first crewed missions to space.

Hague and Ovchinin remained under medical observation Friday, but no serious health problems were reported.

Russian space chief Dmitry Rogozin said he was forming a state commission to investigate what caused the failure.

Dzhezkazgan is about 450 kilometers (280 miles) northeast of Baikonur, and spacecraft returning from the ISS normally land in that region. Three Americans, two Russians and one German are now aboard the station.

"The crew has landed".

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Family members breathlessly awaited the result of the rocket launch, the culmination of a childhood dream for Hague, a 43-year-old Hoxie native and U.S. Air Force colonel. This was his first trip to the International Space Station. "But we have to keep going, for the sake of mankind".

There was no immediate word on whether the space station crew might need to extend its own six-month mission.

Launched on October 11 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, the Soyuz MS-10 capsule carrying American astronaut Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Aleksey Ovchinin is now attempting an emergency landing following booster failure. Unmanned cargo launches carry food and other supplies to the ISS and use the same rocket system as the Soyuz.

Relations between the US and Russian Federation have been very tense in recent years.

Earlier this week, Bridenstine emphasized that collaboration with Russia's Roscosmos remains important.

Collaboration between the United States and Russian space agencies has largely steered clear of geopolitical controversies, despite a standoff between Washington and Moscow that has continued since Russia's annexation of the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 and allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. They will be transported to the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center in Star City, Russia outside of Moscow.

Vladimir Titov and Gennady Strekalov survived a fire during launch in Kazakhstan in 1983. Ovchinin and Hague were both traveling to the ISS to join the three astronauts now aboard - Gerst, NASA's Serena Auñón-Chancellor, and Roscosmos' Sergey Prokopyev.

Russia, which relies on boosters designed during the Soviet Union, has a reputation for reliability with spacecraft.

Glitches found in Russia's Proton and Soyuz rockets in 2016 were traced to manufacturing flaws at the plant in Voronezh.

In 2008, a Soyuz spacecraft carrying NASA astronaut Peggy Whitson made an unplanned ballistic re-entry on its return to Earth from the International Space Station.

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