US, Russian astronauts survive Soyuz emergency landing

Christopher Davidson
October 13, 2018

"That was a quick flight", he said in a calm voice in a streamed video of the incident. "We plan that they will fly in the spring". "We don't normally pay attention to launches like this because they happen so often". Such a landing is created to decelerate rapidly to bring the astronauts back to the ground, meaning it takes a steep angle of descent and can put the astronauts under extreme gravitational forces, up to eight times normal gravity, as Joe Pappalardo at Popular Mechanics reports. "That's an unbelievable capability and we can't understate how important it is".

Given that the space station is a $100 billion asset, he said, it needs to have someone on board for the arrival of the first commercial manned missions, for safety reasons.

In a series of photos, Mr Gerst captured the moment a Russian Soyuz rocket malfunctioned at the start of what should have been a routine six-hour flight to deliver two astronauts to the ISS.

But the most important thing is that the emergency abort procedure worked-the astronauts are alive.

While a Roscosmos-led commission investigates the root cause of this failure, NASA and ISS partners will review upcoming operational schedules, including two planned spacewalks later this month.

He said a panel of experts is looking into the specific reason that prevented the booster's separation. "The investigation is ongoing, Russian Federation has been very supportive of sharing data with the United States and we're grateful for that".

NASA has relied on Russian rockets to ferry astronauts to the space station since the United States retired its Space Shuttle program in 2011.

The rocket's emergency abort system took over at that point, ejecting the Soyuz capsule, which carried the two-man crew on a harrowing ride back down to Earth.

He said that although it had never been done before, the station was equipped to operate without a human presence for long periods of time.

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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. "The conservation of the station is possible, but it's undesirable".

Interfax quoted a source as saying the crash meant the three people now aboard the space station - a German, a Russian and an American - would be stuck there at least until January.

"To keep space separate from the political environment has been our tradition and we want to keep that", said Bridenstine.

An "anomaly" with the booster led to the launch being aborted, NASA later said.

"They might be the ones that go, or it might be some mixture".

But he also underlined the need for continuing U.S. However, the two sides have continued their cooperation in space.

Sergei Krikalyov, the cosmonaut who heads the manned spaceflight program at Roskosmos, said that the next manned mission to the ISS had been scheduled for December "and we are still counting on that date", the state-run news agency TASS reported.

Associated Press writer Nataliya Vasilyeva contributed.

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