Soyuz Rocket Failure Caused by Collision Between First and Second Stages

Soyuz rocket ascending, October 11, 2018 1 photo
Photo: RT via Youtube
The unsuccessful launch of the MS-10 spacecraft on October 11 had a happy ending, with both American astronaut Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Aleksey Ovchinin getting out of the adventure alive and fit to tell the tale.
Launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, the mission was supposed to take the two men to the International Space Station (ISS). Because of a problem during ascent, the spacecraft separated from the boosters and made an emergency landing.

Initial theories were that for some reason the boosters failed in one way or another, but no one knew exactly how.

According to Roscosmos executive director for manned flights Sergei Krikalyov, cited by Russian news agency TASS, problems began when the first stage of the rocket impacted the second one during separation.

It’s yet unclear what caused the initial problem which caused the stages to collide, but the official says a “deviation from the standard trajectory occurred and apparently the lower part of the second stage disintegrated.” This resulted in a part of the first stage of the booster hitting the second stage.

Both NASA and Roscosmos are looking into the incident which could have had tragic consequences. The Russian’s say they should have a preliminary report ready by the end of the month.

In the meanwhile, launches to the ISS have been grounded. The Souyz MS combo is the only rocket currently capable of taking humans into orbit.

As a result of this, the three astronauts currently on the ISS - Alexander Gerst from ESA, Serena Auñón-Chancellor from NASA and Sergey Prokopyev from Roscosmos – are stranded on the station.

A return of the three is planned for sometime in December, but with no replacements going up in the foreseeable future, the ISS would be on its own for the first time since its completion.
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About the author: Daniel Patrascu
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Daniel loves writing (or so he claims), and he uses this skill to offer readers a "behind the scenes" look at the automotive industry. He also enjoys talking about space exploration and robots, because in his view the only way forward for humanity is away from this planet, in metal bodies.
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