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Home / Science / Here’s What Today’s Rocket Failure Means for Space Station Astronauts

Here’s What Today’s Rocket Failure Means for Space Station Astronauts



The three astronauts currently aboard the International Space Station should have welcomed two new roommates today, but an anomaly a few minutes after the launch sent the crew members back to Earth in a landing of emergency.

Both crew members (NASA astronaut Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Alexey Ovichin) are safe, but the failure of the launch means that much more than just today's space station program will have to be remixed. NASA, the Russian space agency Roscosmos and the control team of the International Space Station still have a lot of decisions about what to do next – not to mention a survey conducted on what went wrong.

The Soyuz rocket and the space ship are work vehicles for Roscosmos. A unscrewed version of the Soyuz is used to launch automated Progress cargo ships at the space station.

"We have a lot of material on board the station to support the crew and will continue to work," NASA spokesperson Kelly Humphries told Space.com. As the team no longer needs to help the new astronauts settle in the space station, the team is planning to grow its scientific work in the near future. Robotic cargo launches are also planned with refueling ships built in the United States to provide more supplies to the station in the next two months.

<img class = "pure-img lazy" big-src = "https://img.purch.com/h/1
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Credit: NASA

But the consequences of the failed launch will spread through the space station activities. 39. Aia, one of the two crew members at the launch today, was scheduled to take part in two upcoming spacewalks on October 19 and 25 to replace the batteries attached to the exterior of the the space station.

Those walks in space had already been postponed after the Japanese The cargo vehicle carrying the new batteries suffered a series of delays in launching in September. "Clearly they will have to consider the options they have on this, but we still have no decision on that," Humphries said of the spaceships.

Three astronauts are currently on board the space station: The NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor, the Russian cosmonaut Sergey Prokopyev and the astronaut of the European Space Agency Alexander Gerst. Aja and her Ovchinin crew would have to complete the crew from today until December, when the three astronauts currently on board will return to Earth.

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

Each crew returns to Earth in the capsule that drove to the space station, then Auñón-Chancellor, Prokopyev and Gerst will not be blocked by the failure of today's launch. However, exactly when that crew returns to Earth is uncertain, as it may depend on the moment their rescue arrives at the space station.

NASA depended on Russia's space ship and Soyuz missiles to fly spaceships to and from the space station since the agency withdrew its space fleet in 2011. NASA intends to resume US launches to the space station on a private space vehicle built by SpaceX and Boeing, from 2019.

SpaceX plans to launch an unmanned test flight of its Crew Dragon spacecraft by January, but may be ready for launch in December depending on the needs of NASA, the company said. A manned launch on Crew Dragon could take place in June 2019.

Boeing, meanwhile, plans to launch an unmanned test flight of the Starliner space capsule in March, with a manned flight to the station in the United States. August 2019. NASA unveiled the astronauts to fly on those SpaceX and Boeing missions on August 3rd.

Email Meghan Bartels at mbartels@space.com or follow her @meghanbartels . Follow us on @ Spacedotcom and Facebook. Original article on Space.com.


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