Thursday, October 11, 2018
They wanted to go into space – and landed after a short time back on Earth. Two spacemen have survived the accident of a Soyuz rocket unscathed. The disaster has consequences for the men on the ISS. Because all flights are now stopped.
Two spacemen have survived the first false start of a Russian Soyuz rocket for decades thanks to an emergency landing. Rescuers hid the Russian cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin and his US counterpart Nick Hague from their capsule, which had crashed down on parachutes near the city of Dzheskasgan in the center of Kazakhstan. The launcher had shut down and disbanded 119 seconds after take-off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome due to technical problems. The Russian space agency Roskosmos published first pictures of the two rescued astronauts. You can see Russian cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin and his US colleague Nick Hague sitting on a sofa. With them the blood pressure and the oxygen content of the blood are measured. In front of them are bowls of nuts and almonds. Hague smiled in a picture. Nasa tweeted that search and rescue teams reported that the men were "in good shape after a safe landing." Nasa boss Jim Bridenstine also chose this formulation. Commander Alexander Gerst from Germany and his colleagues waited in vain for the new colleagues on the International Space Station ISS. The crew had been informed from Earth about the mildly false start, said the US space agency Nasa. A possible extension of Gersts stay because of the accident is not yet decided, said Europe's space manager Jan Wörner. "It's too early for that now, it depends very much on how quickly you can find the cause and exclude for the future." Gerst's mission runs until December. If he had to stay longer in space because of the breakdown, it would be all there, said Wörner, who heads Europe's space agency Esa. Meanwhile, former astronaut Ulrich Walter is sure that Gerst will have to put up with another shift. "Alexander Gerst will certainly stay up there for three months longer," he said. "The crew has landed." All live For the Russian space travel the accident a serious setback. He also comes at a time when the otherwise good relationship with the US colleagues is curious. The new Nasa boss Jim Bridenstine pursued the start of Baikonur and agreed with the Russians a continuation of the cooperation. The USA had their space shuttle program set in the year 2011. Since then, US astronauts have only been able to reach the ISS by Soyuz. Manned Soyuz launches were suspended after the failure. "In such a situation, there are no further launches for the time being, until the cause has been finally clarified," said the Vice President of Space Administration Yury Borisov. A commission was established to investigate the causes. "On the other hand, emergency and rescue systems have been shown to work, and that is very important," Borisov told Interfax. The Soyuz launcher, actually the proven workhorse of Russian space travel, had set off at 14:40 local time (10.40 clock CEST) in Baikonur. According to preliminary data from experts already occurred at the burning of the first rocket stage problems. NASA spoke of an "anomaly" at the level. Therefore, the second stage did not light, but the rocket broke up. On television pictures were some time after launch small explosions on the rocket to see. A little later, in addition to the fire tail and white smoke from the engines can be seen. Shots from inside the capsule show how Owtschinin and Hague are shaken up when the incident occurs in the middle of the flight. The capsule "Soyuz-MS10" with Ovchinin and Hague went into a flatter trajectory. It followed fearful minutes until the emergency landing about 400 kilometers from the starting point. Dmitri Rogosin, head of the Russian space agency Roskosmos, gave the all-clear on Twitter. Ovchinin and Hague were to be flown after their salvage over Baikonur to Moscow. Hole in ISS Over Gerst's second space flight and his time as the first German commander of the ISS does not seem to be a good star. At the space capsule "Soyuz-MS09", with which he came to the ISS, a small hole had recently been discovered. Although the leak could be closed, but the cause is unclear. More on the topic There are no contracts between Roskosmos and the US on flights from US astronauts to the ISS beyond the spring of 2019. But Bridenstine said he had agreed to continue cooperation with Rogosin on the ISS. Also, both sides wanted to search together for life in space and cooperate at a future moon station. On the ISS next to Gerst currently working the Russian Sergei Prokopjew and the American Serena Aunon-Chancellor. Just last Thursday, a Russian Soyuz capsule from the ISS had safely returned to Earth. The capsule with three astronauts Oleg Artemyev, Drew Feustel and Ricky Arnold was set in the steppe of Kazakhstan.