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Setback for the space station program!

 
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Gord Green
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Joined: 07 Oct 2014
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Location: Buffalo, NY

PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 8:40 pm    Post subject: Setback for the space station program! Reply with quote

Russian rocket malfunctions during launch to space station; crew makes safe landing



An American and a Russian spaceflier are in good shape after they were forced to abort their trip to the International Space Station due to a rocket anomaly, but today’s scary launch has cast a pall over orbital operations going forward.

NASA astronaut Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Alexey Ovchinin were due to begin a six-month stint in orbit with their launch from Russia’s Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, aboard a Soyuz spacecraft that was perched atop Russia’s workhorse Soyuz-FG rocket.

Just minutes after liftoff at 2:40 p.m. local time (1:40 a.m. PT), the rocket booster experienced an anomaly, and the ascent was aborted. Video showed the booster breaking up at high altitude.

The Soyuz spacecraft was thrown clear of the rocket and plunged back to Earth for a ballistic landing, with peak acceleration estimated at 6 to 7 G’s. After a nail-biting interval, a search and rescue team located the craft and retrieved Hague and Ovchinin in good condition.

NASA said the pair would be flown back to Russia’s Star City cosmonaut center, outside Moscow, for further examination and debriefing.

“Safety of the crew is the utmost priority for NASA,” the space agency said in a statement. “A thorough investigation into the cause of the incident will be conducted.”

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine, who has been visiting Russia and Kazakhstan in conjunction with today’s launch, said he was “grateful that everyone is safe.”

Russia’s space agency tweeted out pictures of the spacefliers sitting in a lounge in Kazakhstan after their retrieval from the Soyuz capsule, plus video showing them making their way to Baikonur:
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Crewed flights to the space station will be suspended while the investigation unfolds, and that’s likely to scramble the schedule of the station’s comings and goings. Russia’s Soyuz craft currently provides the only means to get to and from the orbital outpost. Two breeds of U.S.-built space taxis are being developed by SpaceX and Boeing, but the current schedule doesn’t call for them to carry astronauts until next June at the earliest.

Three spacefliers — NASA’s Serena Auñón-Chancellor, Russia’s Sergey Prokopyev and Germany’s Alexander Gerst — are currently aboard the station. They’re scheduled to ride a Soyuz that’s docked to the station back down to Kazakhstan in December, but that departure date may now be up for discussion.

If Soyuz launches are suspended for an extended period, one of the potential options would be to let the current crew return as planned and leave the station temporarily uncrewed. Such a scenario was considered in 2011 when one of Russia’s robotic Progress cargo ships was lost due to a rocket malfunction, forcing an investigation. In that case, Russian investigators gave the Soyuz a clean bill of health soon enough that mission managers could avoid having to go with the crewless option.

Today’s anomaly comes on top of an earlier setback for the space station program, involving an air leak in the Soyuz that’s currently docked to the station. The crew was able to track down the leak and patch up a small hole in the spacecraft’s hull, but the investigation of the cause is continuing. Speculation over whether the hole was made accidentally or intentionally has been a source of consternation for the long-running U.S.-Russian space relationship.

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Bud Brewster
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Joined: 14 Dec 2013
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 11, 2018 10:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

________________________________

Gord, I'm extremely gratefully for your post, along with all the other posts like it you've provided over the years. The event you reported in the message above is important to the space program, and on behalf of all our members, we thank you for sharing it.

And on that note, I can state with pride that All Sci-Fi is the only message board I know of which offers both imaginative posts about science fiction movies and TV series, but also science news, like your post above. Very Happy

All Sci-Fi has a small but intelligent group of regular contributors, but we all wish All Sci-Fi had many other members who shared our love for both science and science fiction.

It's unfortunate that none of the members of All Sci-Fi are aware of the strenuous efforts I've made over the years to recruit new people to the board. Such efforts have never been very successful . . . and now it seems that message boards web-wide are dwindling away. Sad

And yet, the small and loyal group of interesting, imaginative, and intelligent contributors we have continue to make All Sci-Fi successful, energetic, and consistently entertaining!

I promise to keep this website open for business long after the less attractive and user-friendly boards have faded away.

Frankly . . . I'd be lost without it! Shocked

Bud

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orzel-w
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Joined: 19 Sep 2014
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bud Brewster wrote:
. . . and now it seems that message boards web-wide are dwindling away. Sad

... being replaced by the likes of Facebook groups, which are totally impractical for organized, archival purposes.
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WayneO
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Custer
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Joined: 22 Aug 2015
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

True. I quite enjoy posting at a vintage sf paperback & pulp FB group, and it's nice to receive up to maybe 72 likes for a post, and even have a few people sharing it... but after a day or two the post sinks out of sight and is lost forever.

If someone could make a system that had the immediacy of FB, and the easy-to-access archiving of a message board, then the world would be their lobster... Wink


Yes, it should be "oyster" not "lobster," I know, but it's a joke from an old UK TV show, "Only Fools and Horses"...
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Bud Brewster
Galactic Fleet Admiral (site admin)


Joined: 14 Dec 2013
Posts: 8624
Location: North Carolina

PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

________________________________

As you guys have noticed, Servage.net is getting increasingly unreliable, and today I told Raj Patel that we need to relocate to a web host with a good reputation so we don't have to endure these damned periods of down time.

Raj assures me that when the change is complete, you guys won't even notice a difference. Your current bookmark for All Sci-Fi will work exactly the same, and they'll be no interruption while the change is being made.

BlueHost seems to be a highly rated web host, and I asked Raj to look it that possibility, or recommend one he knows would be even better.

I've already asked Servage.net if I can get a refund on my unused rental fee if I decide to relocate. So, they know I'm not going to meekly put up with their crap much longer.

Staying with Servage.net was necessary after Sean Everett destroyed the former board, because I had to talk Servage.net into transferring the backup of our database they had saved to my own Servage.net account.

But now that all that is behind us, Raj can relocated the board to any web host we choose. Very Happy

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orzel-w
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Joined: 19 Sep 2014
Posts: 1859

PostPosted: Fri Oct 12, 2018 6:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Custer wrote:
... it's nice to receive up to maybe 72 likes for a post, and even have a few people sharing it... but after a day or two the post sinks out of sight and is lost forever.

Yet another FB "anomaly" I noticed is when you've clicked on a group of thumbnail images to view each of them individually. If you then post a comment in that viewing mode, the comment doesn't appear back on the main page under the thumbnails with all the other comments. It appears only to others who are also viewing the images individually. So if you post a comment there, nobody who's already viewed the images individually will see it, unless they again use the individual image viewing mode. Mad

I'm sorry... Were we talking about the space program setback?
Embarassed
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WayneO
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