Wednesday, 12 December, 2018

Soyuz crew reportedly alive after emergency landing

Elijah Vega | 11 October, 2018, 18:12

But more than a minute after launch, their Soyuz MS-10's booster failed.

"An accident with the booster, 2 minutes, 45 seconds".

Space officials from both Russian Federation and the USA said the two astronauts endured higher than normal G force.

Russian Federation has promised to share all relevant information with the US.

A reporter who observed the launch from around 1 km away said it had gone smoothly in its initial stages.

After the malfunction they were forced to return to Earth in a process known as a "ballistic re-entry", during which they experienced forces of up to 7G.

Search and rescue crews have deployed to the Soyuz landing site and are in contact with the two crew members, one America and one Russian, who are in good condition.

It can hold a crew of up to six people and at present has three people aboard, two men - a German and a Russian - as well as one female US astronaut.

While that was higher than normal they were trained to endure such loads, he added.

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NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said in a statement NASA astronaut Nick Hague and Roscosmos' Alexei Ovchinin will be flown to the Cosmonaut Training Center outside Moscow.

Dzhezkazgan is about 450 kilometers (280 miles) northeast of Baikonur, and spacecraft returning from the ISS normally land in that region.

Search and recovery teams had been predeployed to areas beneath the possible flight path. Helicopters were able to reach Haig and Ovchinin fairly quickly and extract them from the capsule.

The last failure of a Soyuz in flight was 18a in 1975, which subjected the crew to forces up to 21G as the capsule was flung back to earth after the stages of the booster failed to separate properly.

In August, the International Space Station crew spotted a hole in a Russian Soyuz capsule docked to the orbiting outpost that caused a brief loss of air pressure before being patched.

NASA, the Russian space agency Roscosmos, and the International Space Station control team still have a whole lot of decisions to make about what to do next - not to mention an investigation to conduct into what went wrong.

Humphries said it's too early to tell whether the next scheduled crew launch of three astronauts in December will be affected by today's launch failure.

The failure is a setback for the Russian space program and the latest in a string of mishaps.

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