Here's What Today's Soyuz Launch Failure Means for Space Station Astronauts

Mindy Sparks
October 11, 2018

A Soyuz rocket meant to carry a Russian cosmonaut and a USA astronaut failed during launch and plummeted back to earth in the skies above Kazakstan on Thursday morning.

A search-and-rescue team has reached the landing site, both crewmembers are in good condition and have left the Soyuz capsule as of 6:10 a.m. EDT, NASA spokesperson Brandi Dean said during live television commentary.

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. Soviet cosmonauts Vladimir Titov and Gennady Strekalov jettisoned and landed safely near the launch pad after the Soyuz explosion. Ovchinin spent six months on the station in 2016.

The Soyuz-FG rocket booster which carries the Soyuz MS-10 capsule is pictured on its way to the International Space Station.

According to local reports, the rocket has made an emergency landing in Kazakhstan, and the crew are alive.

"NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and the NASA team are monitoring the situation carefully", the statement continued.

NASA earlier tweeted that there had been an issue with the booster and that its teams were heading towards the expected touchdown location.


During a trip to Moscow this week, Bridenstine emphasized the importance of continuing to work with Russia's NASA equivalent, Roscosmos.

Relations between Moscow and Washington have sunk to post-Cold War lows over the crisis in Ukraine, the war in Syria and allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 USA presidential vote, but they have maintained cooperation in space research.

The crew members of Expedition 57 are conducting experiments in biology, biotechnology, physical science and Earth science aboard the International Space Station.

"An investigative group has been formed and officials are now examining the launch site, documents are being seized", the Investigative Committee said in a statement. Russian Federation stands to lose that monopoly in the coming years with the arrival of SpaceX's Dragon v2 and Boeing's Starliner crew capsules.

A Russian Soyuz rocket carrying a new U.S.

Glitches found in Russia's Proton and Soyuz rockets in 2016 were traced to manufacturing flaws at the plant in Voronezh. Officials are also investigating the unusual hole recently found in a Soyuz spacecraft aboard the International Space Station. The mission was carrying two crew members instead of its usual three due to Russia's delay of scientific instruments which the third passenger was trained for.

The Soyuz began an immediate "ballistic" reentry at that time, and landed on Earth 20 kilometres outside of Jezkazgan, Kazakhstan less than an hour after launch.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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