Soyuz rocket crew rescued after emergency landing

12 October, 2018, 00:18 | Author: Darnell Taylor

-Russian crew of a Soyuz spacecraft en route to the International Space Station was forced to make a dramatic emergency landing in Kazakhstan on Thursday when their rocket failed in mid-air.

Hague and Ovchinin launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 4:40 a.m. ET, heading to join the crew of the International Space Station.

The rescue capsule automatically jettisoned from the booster and went into a ballistic descent, landing at a sharper than normal angle and subjecting the crew to heavy gravitational force. Dzhezkazgan is about 280 miles northeast of Baikonur.

The crew reached the ground safely.

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Rescue crews are now heading towards the emergency landing site in the barren Kazakh steppe to provide support for the crew.

In 1975, a crewed Soyuz rocket suffered an in-flight failure, causing an abort 295 sec. after launch.

Russian flight controllers described the forces experienced by Hague and Ovchinin as six to seven Gs due to the lack of velocity when the failure occurred.

It comes weeks after a hole was discovered in the International Space Station amid talk from the Russian space authorities of deliberate sabotage.

Hague and Ovchinin were shown being violently shaken in the vessel, and shortly thereafter the feed cut out - to be replaced with a look inside NASA's mission control room. But as the Soyuz is now the only way we have to get humans into space, this means new crew can't be sent to the ISS until Roscosmos is confident the issue has been identified and resolved. This is standard procedure, as they obviously don't want to launch another rocket and risk encountering the same issue.

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The three astronauts now on board the space station have been informed of the failed launch and their schedule for the day is being reshuffled, since they'll no longer be able to greet the incoming duo.

Now, American companies SpaceX and Boeing are working to launch their first crewed missions to space. Just over a minute after the launch, the spacecraft's booster failed and the launch was aborted.

Even if the Soyuz spacecraft is cleared for launch before December, Hadfield said, it could end up carrying astronauts from Thursday's launch rather than the next scheduled crew.

Russian investigators said they were launching a criminal probe into the accident, the first such incident on a manned flight in the country's post-Soviet history.

The Canadian Space Agency said Thursday that it did not know whether the failed launch would affect Saint-Jacques' launch date.

But the Russian space agency will not be holding a press conference today, she added.

Roscosmos is forming a state commission to investigate the incident, Dean said.

The landing location was in Kazakhstan, where the rocket took off, according to Russia's space agency Roscosmos.

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