NASA says will use Russia's Soyuz rocket again despite accident

U.S. astronaut Nick Hague right and Russian cosmonaut Alexey Ovchinin crew members of the mission to the International Space Station wave as they board the rocket prior to the launch of Soyuz-FG rocket at the Russian leased Baikonur cosmodrome Kazakhs

The Russian space agency also sent 70 rocket engines back to production lines in 2016 to replace broken parts.

Relations between Moscow and Washington have sunk to post-Cold War lows over the crisis in Ukraine, the war in Syria and allegations of Russian meddling in the 2016 USA presidential vote, but they have maintained co-operation in space research. Hague has been in the astronaut corps for five years after a career in the Air Force.

A Russian "state commission" has been formed to investigate the rocket failure. The mission was aborted shortly after launch, and the pair returned to earth safely in an emergency landing.

"The Soyuz capsule is returning to Earth via a ballistic descent, which is a sharper angle of landing compared to normal", NASA tweeted.

While the Soyuz rocket is considered a reliable launch vehicle in the space sector, this is not the first failure in the Soyuz program's history. He didn't say if he suspected any of the current crew of three Americans, two Russians and a German aboard the station of malfeasance.

He recalled the tense moment when he heard Hague reporting the G-forces in Russian to Mission Control, followed by a break in communications and the loss of flight data. The Soyuz was supposed to discard its first stage booster, whose fuel was empty. The crew is now being brought to Moscow. "A lot of people very, very happy". That was a quick flight, ' he said in a calm voice in a streamed video of the incident.

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After the malfunction they were forced to return to Earth in a process known as a "ballistic re-entry", during which they experienced forces of up to 7G. Search and rescue teams were immediately scrambled to recover the crew and paratroopers were dropped from a plane to reach the site and help the rescue effort. Russian Federation says it has opened a criminal investigation and grounded all Soyuz flights. "That's an unbelievable capability and we can't understate how important it is".

The officials can not yet identify the chief cause of the Soyuz failure, aside from the fact that components of different stages of the rocket collided with each other.

Experts are now trying to determine what specific glitch prevented the booster's separation.

"We will need to look and analyze the specific cause - whether it was a cable, a pyro or a nut", he said.

Because the Soyuz is the only option right now for manned travel, Roskosmos is expected to give the Soyuz the green light to resume operations, if only so that the space station isn't abandoned. An investigation into that anomaly and how the hole was formed is also underway. "And at this point I'm confident that we'll launch in December".

Two astronauts managed a narrow escape when a Russian Soyuz rocket malfunctioned two minutes after liftoff Thursday on a mission to the International Space Station.

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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. More importantly, the incident could have easily been a nightmare for the space program - another Challenger.

Rogozin was flying to the scene of the emergency landing, the space agency said. "The conservation of the station is possible, but it's undesirable". NASA has been buying seats on Soyuz rockets ever since but next year SpaceX and Boeing should debut their launch systems capable of ferrying astronauts to and fro the ISS.

"To keep space separate from the political environment has been our tradition and we want to keep that", said Bridenstine. "We are planning their flight for the spring of next year".

"I think this demonstrates how important it is. not be dependent on one system or another system". However, the two sides have continued their cooperation in space.

Rogozin said at the time that the problem with the launch of the 2.6 billion-rouble ($39.02 million) satellite had been due to an embarrassing programming error.

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