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Russian Supply Vehicle To ISS Burns

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the shuttle-for-sale-slightly-used dept.

ISS 184

First time accepted submitter Oxford_Comma_Lover writes "The Russian cargo spacecraft 'Progress' developed problems and burned up in the atmosphere shortly after its launch at 1300 GMT. From the article: 'The Russian space agency said the Progress M-12M cargo ship was not placed in the correct orbit by its rocket and fell back to Earth. The vessel was carrying three tonnes of supplies for the ISS astronauts.'"

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I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (-1, Troll)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194092)

Houston, we have the DT's.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (4, Funny)

Beelzebud (1361137) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194110)

Say what you will about Russia, but they can still put humans in space...

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194170)

I wouldn't risk it. It's the 4th or so launch that ends badly in a row.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (3, Interesting)

nofx_3 (40519) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194290)

What? This was the FIRST failure of a progress module. Also as far as I know, they haven't had a single fatality related to their current manned space vehicle (the Soyuz) and unless they are hiding some early issues, they have never lost any crew on manned flights. Remember, the shuttle lost 2 crews, and we lost an Apollo crew on the ground. I would say the Russian human spaceflight program is safer than the US program, although IMHO losing 2 shuttle crews is a reasonable amount of loss for a pioneering program. Just think about how many ships were lost when man first started exploring the globe.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194384)

https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/List_of_spaceflight-related_accidents_and_incidents

Just saying...

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2)

ruiner13 (527499) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194416)

I'm pretty sure Vladimir Komarov would disagree with you... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soyuz_1 [wikipedia.org] .

Also, there seem to be quite a few Russian space program deaths: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_space_program#Incidents_and_setbacks [wikipedia.org]

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

Ex-MislTech (557759) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194796)

This is correct, and lying governments are not restricted to just the US.

I think you will find most governments around the world lie to their citizens at
various times.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2)

gulikoza (1087283) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194456)

Soyuz 1 crashed with Vladimir Komarov on re-entry and Soyuz 11 depressurized during preparations for re-entry. But Soyuz still has a pretty good safety record.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194500)

I would say the Russian human spaceflight program is safer than the US program

Nedelin: 165 dead.
Plesetsk: 48 dead.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2)

CrimsonAvenger (580665) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194506)

Also as far as I know, they haven't had a single fatality related to their current manned space vehicle (the Soyuz) and unless they are hiding some early issues, they have never lost any crew on manned flights.

The Russians (Soviets at the time) had two loss-of-crew accidents with the Soyuz. Just like the Shuttle, except that the Shuttle flew more times than the Soyuz (yes, the Soyuz is considerably older than Shuttle, and has flown fewer missions).

In addition, the Soyuz has failed its mission considerably more often than Shuttle has.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (3, Informative)

Wyatt Earp (1029) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194510)

The Soviets lost Soyuz 1, Soyuz 11 for four dead in space flights.

The two Shuttles add up to more deaths because the Shuttles carried more people than any Soviet or Russian Federation craft.

Michael J. Adams died while piloting a North American X-15 rocket plane on reentry from 50.4 miles up.

Shuttle did 135 launches with two lost craft
Soyuz has done 111 launches with two lost craft
Apollo did 16 launches with no lost craft
Gemini did 10 launches with no lost craft
Vostok did 6 launches with no lost craft
Mercury did 6 launches with no lost craft
Voskhod did 2 launches with no lost craft

US 167 launches - 2 losses
USSR/Russian Federation 119 launches - 2 losses

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

vlm (69642) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194652)

Note that Soyuz is on about its 7th or 8th generation of craft. The soyuz deaths occurred in some pretty ancient models.

Standard /. car analogy is its like being scared to hitch a ride in your kid's ford focus because in your dad's generation ford made the incredible exploding pinto. There's a lot of water under the bridge in the last 5 generations of vehicle and 40 years. I'd feel much safer in a current model soyuz than a current model space shuttle, for obvious reasons.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soyuz_(spacecraft) [wikipedia.org]

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194724)

Note that Soyuz is on about its 7th or 8th generation of craft. The soyuz deaths occurred in some pretty ancient models.

And the Soyuz 11 problem wouldn't have affected the current crews since they wear suits.

BTW, weren't there a couple of close calls when the re-entry module didn't separate properly? AFAIR the crews survived but had an exciting ride.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

ZankerH (1401751) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195570)

BTW, weren't there a couple of close calls when the re-entry module didn't separate properly? AFAIR the crews survived but had an exciting ride.

That's because Soyuz, unlike the shuttle, has a "survive but have an exciting ride" mode - when the controls on the descent module fail, it can re-enter on a ballistic trajectory and survive. Shuttle only had "textbook-perfect re-entry" and "loss of vehicle and crew" modes.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

VitaminB52 (550802) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194792)

I'd feel much safer in a current model soyuz than a current model space shuttle

There is no current model space shuttle, only a retired model space shuttle.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

Wyatt Earp (1029) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194870)

And Atlantis, Discovery and Endeavor were different shuttle "generations" from Columbia and Challenger.

In both American accidents it was the rocket or fuel tank that lead to the loss of the craft, in both of the Soviet losses it was capsule design that lead to the loss of the craft.

If the Russians get the Soyuz out to 135 launches like Shuttle we might see another loss.

Looking at newer generation Soyuz launch history
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R-7_(rocket_family) [wikipedia.org]
Soyuz-U - 19 losses in 727 launches - 2.6% loss rate or worse than Shuttle's 1.48% loss rate
Soyuz-U2 - 2 losses in 92 launches - 2.1% loss rate - no longer active
Soyuz-FG - 0 losses in 29 launches
Soyuz-2.1a - 1 loss in 4 launches - 25% loss rate
Soyuz-2.1b - 0 losses in 3 launches

763 launches of active Soyuz rocket models and 20 lost rockets give us a 2.62% loss rate, or worse than Shuttle.

So no, getting on a Soyuz-U, FG, or 2.1x is not safer than a Shuttle was.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195658)

Soyuz-2.1b - 0 losses in 3 launches

763 launches of active Soyuz rocket models and 20 lost rockets give us a 2.62% loss rate, or worse than Shuttle.

So no, getting on a Soyuz-U, FG, or 2.1x is not safer than a Shuttle was.

Except that the shuttle killed two crews and Soyuz over the same time period killed none. That's the wonder of building an actual escape system into your design so the crew don't die as soon as something goes wrong.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

Wyatt Earp (1029) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195870)

When they Soyuz get to 135 manned launches (they are at 119 right now) without a loss, then we can compare to Shuttle.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2)

snowgirl (978879) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194772)

Apollo did 16 launches with no lost craft

Only if you don't count a fire during a launch rehearsal. Sure it's not actually a launch... but they had to scrap that whole flight. But still, I consider it close enough. For instance, if a couple dies during their wedding rehearsal, history should record that but for the deaths, they would have married. (In France, it would probably be good enough to get presidential approval to actually construct the marriage despite them being dead, especially if one were to survive.)

The point is, it's kind of dick to not include the lost Apollo mission on account of it "never having actually launched"... when in truth, but for the fire, it would have launched.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194882)

The point is, it's kind of dick to not include the lost Apollo mission on account of it "never having actually launched"... when in truth, but for the fire, it would have launched.

But I believe it was being tested in a configuration that would never have flown; if I remember correctly, the cabin atmosphere changed from normal air to low-pressure (6psi?) pure O2 during launch, whereas the test was about 16psi pure O2.

That said, there were enough flaws with the Block I Apollo capsules that the odds of killing a crew at some point without the Block II redesign were pretty high.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

Shompol (1690084) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194948)

- Russia lost two shuttles in 60s and 70th with total 4 crew members lost
- US lost one in 80s and 2000's, with 14 crew members lost.

Based on the more recent nature of US accidents (and massive loss of lives), any insurance carrier will confirm that US missions are riskier (would command higher insurance premiums). Good thing they got discontinued, I guess.

Source: https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/List_of_spaceflight-related_accidents_and_incidents [wikimedia.org]

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

jo42 (227475) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195006)

Apollo did 16 launches with no lost craft

You have conveniently overlooked Apollo 1: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_1 [wikipedia.org]

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194530)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_spaceflight-related_accidents_and_incidents

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2, Interesting)

Dan East (318230) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194536)

According to wikipedia (https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/List_of_spaceflight-related_accidents_and_incidents), 277 Americans have flown in space, compared to 96 for USSR/Russia. 14 Americans have been killed in spaceflight (technically 13, because one was Israeli), and 4 Soviets were killed. That's a death rate of 5% for USA and 4.2% for Russia.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2)

CrimsonAvenger (580665) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194710)

Misleading statistics.

There have been 277 DIFFERENT Americans in space. Quite a few have flown more than once.

Ditto the Russians.

Note that Shuttle had 135 flights, with seven crew each. Call it 950 total Shuttle crew. Fourteen fatalities, so about 1.5% death rates on Shuttle

The Russians have flown Soyuz 110 times, two crew per shot. 220 Russians, four dead. Or about 1.8% death rate.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

Vectormatic (1759674) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195352)

not every shuttle flight had the max crew of seven, STS-135 for instance, had only four crewmembers, since there was no back-up shuttle available if some malfunction prevented normal de-orbit. The plan in case of failure was to stay over on the ISS and use soyuz's to come back down. All test flights with enterprise (which arent counted in the 135 number) had two crew, the four initial flights for columbia were 2-man missions. Counting up all STS flights on wikipedia comes to 816 crew members. 14 dead on 816 makes a 1.7% death rate

Also, starting with soyuz flight TM-2, every flight (which is 60-70 flights since) except two have been crewed with three, Prior to the pressure loss of Suyoz-11, the lack of pressure suits allowed for a few three crew flights as well on the older models.
I count 55 two man soyuz flights, two one man flights and 53 three man flights for 271 cosmonauts.

Also, Soyuz 1 was crewed by one, soyuz 11 by two, which makes three dead kosomonauts on 272, for a 1.1% death rate.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (4, Informative)

Dan East (318230) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194756)

Here are more accurate statistics:
http://space.kursknet.ru/cosmos/english/other/stat_kk.sht [kursknet.ru]

Russia / USSR launched 282 man-flights into space. USA launched 881 man-flights. Thus the fatality rate for Russia is 1.4%, and for USA 1.6%.

China has launched 6 man-flights on 3 launches with a 0% fatality rate.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

tp1024 (2409684) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194640)

They've had two fatal accidents in the 1970ies. One because of moronic Soviet orders to have a premature flight. Soyuz 1 - the first manned flight - failed, after all previous unmanned test flights had failed to land intact. Soyuz 1 crashed after vaporized (and then re-solidified) glue prevented the parachute from opening. The only cosmonaut died.

Soyuz 11 was a classic case of "someone had to find out the hard way" - a pressure valve opened due to bad luck, three cosmonauts on board suffocated. For a long time after, Soyuz only flew with two people on board - as they had to wear pressure suits during flight. They still do wear them, but lighter suits and a slightly bigger capsule allowed three to get on board again.

After that, all incidents were without fatalities. Although there was one flight where the cosmonauts had to bail out right at the launch pad, when an engine failed, the rocket fell over and exploded on the pad.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

S.O.B. (136083) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194738)

If you mean the current generation of Soyuz hasn't lost any crew then you are correct but there were fatalities with the first generation. However, the last fatality was over 40 years and 100 launches ago so you are absolutely correct that the Russian program has a much better safety record than NASA.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194934)

Uh...yes they have lost crews on soyuz:

Soyuz 1 (parachute failure),
Soyuz 11 (depresurization).

Soyuz 18, 23 damn near killed the crew. One was dragged under water by the parachute after a water landing, and the other one suffered a second stage failure which hurtled the entire stack pointing towards the earch at 21g's, fortunetly the emergency abort worked....but after landing the vehicle rolled down a hill and stopped just short of a high cliff . There comander never fully recovered.

There are several other close calls and probably other undocumented "loses". You can read them here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_spaceflight-related_accidents_and_incidents

Neither agency has had an incedent free history. I think its mostly sheer luck (and some truly smart, quick thinking individuals) there where not more deaths from both NASA or USSR.

Having known NASA engineers, there sentemint on russian hardware was that is was shitty (like duct tape, bubble gum and tinfoil shitty). No, I would not use a pre or post soviet era rocket given the choice.

As far as vehical loss which resulted in deaths...USSR takes the cake.
R-12 pad explosion: 145 deaths,
Vostok 2 pad explosion: 45 deaths

 

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194242)

...they just may not be there for long...

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

manoweb (1993306) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194262)

Now that the Shuttle is gone, it will be possible to focus on much better ways to send humans to space. If we really wanted, there are American companies that could send humans in space, with Dragon or Atlas, at the same level of risk of the Shuttle. It's only a matter of certifications, after all. I think that the Russians are *very* nervous.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194634)

Based on my extensive knowledge of cartoons, I suggest a big explosion, a see-saw with a 10tn weight on it or a Pokemon attack.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

raydobbs (99133) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194704)

These methods sound like they are Michelle Bachmann approved

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (2, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194900)

If we really wanted, there are American companies that could send humans in space, with Dragon or Atlas, at the same level of risk of the Shuttle.

So far, there's not proof that an "American company" could even replicate the 1961 mission that sent Alan Shepard into space.

Maybe you should wait until a private corporation sends one single human into space and brings him back alive before making claims about what they can do. And it's not just a "matter of certifications" because if they wanted proof of concept they could launch from some third world country (where they'll probably end up building their craft anyway).

I think a lot of people overestimate private industry's ability to achieve safe human space travel.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194508)

Say what you will about Russia, but they can still put humans in space...

Or at least high into the atmosphere. I'm more interested in being able to get them *back* from space.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195116)

Stupid Russians, acting like they *invented* modern space flight or something.

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194112)

I actually believe vodka was used as fuel here...

Re:I'm afraid this means vodka rationing, boys (1)

ppz003 (797487) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194600)

Dark Templars? Where? Scan now! ... oh. What is it we are watching again?

Mmmm... BBQ. (1)

repetty (260322) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194152)

Mmmm... BBQ.

At least.. (1)

milbournosphere (1273186) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194160)

it was automated. No loss of life, thank goodness. Here's hoping the engineers find the fault quickly so we can keep our astronauts on schedule.

Re:At least.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194250)

Yeah, but they lost 3.31 tons of cargo, which is really unfortunate. It already costs a shitload just to send 1 kg into space, imagine 3.31 tons.

Re:At least.. (1)

NevarMore (248971) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194280)

Yeah, but they lost 3.31 tons of cargo, which is really unfortunate. It already costs a shitload just to send 1 kg into space, imagine 3.31 tons.

Well how much did it cost for us to let it burn up before orbit? We might technically be saving money here...

Re:At least.. (2)

SomeKDEUser (1243392) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194424)

3.31 kilo shitloads (kSL). Metric system FTW.

Re:At least.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37195148)

The Shitload ($L) appears to be a unit of currency in the above example,

1 $L = Cost of orbiting 1 kg.

Assuming these tons are not metric tonnes, we are out 3,009 $L. If anyone has the $L to LoC conversion formula handy, I believe we can take this to its obvious conclusion.

Re:At least.. (2)

GameboyRMH (1153867) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194462)

Hopefully just common supplies...imagine if Robonaut was on that thing...

Re:At least.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194488)

All Progress are automated. They are flying since late 70s. This was basically failure in the rocket which prevented Progress from reaching orbit. Progress also crashed into Mir while in manual flying mode (TORU),

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TORU [wikipedia.org]
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Progress_spacecraft [wikipedia.org]

Anyway, many more Progress will fly. A replacement will most likely be sent Soon (TM).

Re:At least.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194540)

Progress is not designed for re-entry into the atmosphere (it is designed to burn up in the atmosphere) the re-entry module of the manned Soyuz spacecraft is.

Well at least (2)

approachingZero (1365381) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194202)

We have a backup.

Re:Well at least (2)

What the Frag (951841) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194284)

Too bad it's in a museum now.

Maybe the Russians should play Kerbal (1)

SlippyToad (240532) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194264)

I got this game [kerbalspaceprogram.com] . Learned how to put a rocket into orbit. Pretty cool.

Could the Russians use a little sim training, perhaps? Orbital insertion is really not that hard, once you get the hang of it.

Re:Maybe the Russians should play Kerbal (2)

NeverVotedBush (1041088) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194404)

"Orbital insertion is really not that hard, once you get the hang of it."

Being /. I'm guessing that jokes on insertion not being hard would be a waste of time... ;-)

Re:Maybe the Russians should play Kerbal (2)

Hatta (162192) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194834)

Have you tried Orbiter? Great space sim, not really a game. Yes, you do have to break out your orbital mechanics textbook and do some math.

3 tonnes ! (0)

shadowrat (1069614) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194268)

how much of that was people?

Re:3 tonnes ! (1)

Stormthirst (66538) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194318)

RTFA.

None - it was unmanned

Re:3 tonnes ! (2)

confused one (671304) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194338)

None. It was only Soylent Green.

Re:3 tonnes ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194578)

Still 11 years away from having Soylent Green available.

Re:3 tonnes ! (1)

Nemesisghost (1720424) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194346)

Well, unless the ISS crew is eating Soylent Green [wikipedia.org] , none of it was. TFA states that the module was unmanned.

Re:3 tonnes ! (1)

Lemmy Caution (8378) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194452)

The cargo consisted of two Texans and a bottle of vodka.

Re:3 tonnes ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194502)

Two Texans, eh?

Must have been a small bottle, no more than 3 pounds.

And that's assuming neither of the Texans ate breakfast that morning.

Re:3 tonnes ! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194660)

3 tonnes sounds a bit low for two Texans. That sounds like just a single Texan hamhock.

Re:3 tonnes ! (1)

Jeng (926980) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195178)

Funny I don't picture the average Texan to be overweight.

Then again I do live in Texas so reality might be effecting my perceptions.

Re:3 tonnes ! (1)

Desler (1608317) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195348)

Then again I do live in Texas so reality might be effecting my perceptions.

Apparently you must also be blind then. Houston, Dallas and San Antonio are always in either the top 10 or at least within the top 15 of any "Fattest cities" lists.

Re:3 tonnes ! (2)

Jeng (926980) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195906)

It might help that I live in Austin. Austin shows up in the lists for most healthy cities.

Then again the rest of Texas would be happy for Austin to not be part of Texas.

It's Texas's little liberal heart.

Re:3 tonnes ! (2)

Lemmy Caution (8378) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195794)

To be honest, I was going for the cheap laugh. I was thinking about Googling about for US states or cities with highest obesity rates, but, oh look, shiny things.

SpaceX (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194292)

You know, SpaceX is looking pretty good about now.

Re:SpaceX (1)

SydShamino (547793) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194320)

Given the lack of life loss in this, I'd guess that the folks at SpaceX see reason to celebrate this error. It certainly helps hold the door open for them.

Re:SpaceX (3, Informative)

Nyeerrmm (940927) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194602)

I like SpaceX as much as the next guy, but there's more to the puzzle. Orbital Sciences, Boeing's CST-100, Sierra Nevada's DreamChaser, ESA's and JAXA's resupply vehicles, and even Orion-reborn (to name a few) are all critical to maintaining a foothold on the frontier.

I think what this should teach us (potentially having our only way to get things and people to the ISS grounded) is that no single solution can be depended on. In addition to the sought cost benefits of competition, we need multiple vehicles because none of them will be perfectly reliable and all run a risk of being taken out of service temporarily and leaving a gap if nothing else is available.

Re:SpaceX (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37195838)

I bet you the Russian rocket's won't have any problems if the US stops devaluing it's monetary supply.. that's right, this is simply a shot across the bow.

Tomorrow's headlines..... (4, Funny)

Groo Wanderer (180806) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194350)

In related news, food prices on the ISS are expected to spike in early trading tomorrow.....

In more news, 17 Murdock newspapers printed leaks about concerns that relatives of ISS crew have about their safety.

                -Charlie

Freeze dried stawberry icecream rationing (1)

arcite (661011) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195216)

Just make sure to use the small straw for the roast beef dinner, it'll last longer that way.

Soyuz Escape System (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194366)

Since Progress uses the Soyuz rocket, I was curious about the Soyuz escape system. Looks like [russianspaceweb.com] it's pretty well thought through.

Still, I'd like to see Space X's Falcon 9 [sciencesortof.com] ready to replace the Soyuz rocket.

Bad luck lately (3, Interesting)

prefec2 (875483) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194374)

They had a lot of bad luck lately. Losing at least three launches this year. I hope they get back on track soon. Who else could transport new people up and down to the ISS. Freight can be done by ESA's ATV, but human space flight is right now Russia only.

Re:Bad luck lately (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195672)

They had a lot of bad luck lately. Losing at least three launches this year. I hope they get back on track soon. Who else could transport new people up and down to the ISS. Freight can be done by ESA's ATV, but human space flight is right now Russia only.

And China.

Shuttle (0)

amiga3D (567632) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194388)

Maybe it's time to bring the shuttle back out of retirement?

Re:Shuttle (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194434)

No one can afford to run it.

Re:Shuttle (1, Interesting)

silas_moeckel (234313) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194598)

Please no that program should have never happened. Making a reusable do all vehicle for going to space was never a great idea. Weight is so critically important, sure reuse the same modular design over and over. You want a do all thing in orbit and a cheap way to get stuff there. The shuttle was designed to push money all over the country not get to space efficiently.

Re:Shuttle (2)

timeOday (582209) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195330)

The Shuttle killed people every time it exploded.

It does surprise me that we still can't repeatably get into space over 50 years after first doing so. Not that I blame anybody; apparently it's just very, very hard to do.

How are the reserves on board? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194392)

Hoping there wasn't anything important on that Progress .. crew consumables and delta-V definitely being in the "important" category .. :p

Second loss in a week (2)

JoshuaZ (1134087) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194458)

Things are not looking good for the Russian space program right now. This is the second loss they've had in a week. On August 18, rocket failure resulted in a new communication satellite going into an essentially useless orbit. The real worry about this sort of thing is what it will do to the human space program. The US may not be as willing to hire the Russians to go into space when things are running this badly. I can't imagine a PR disaster much worse than American astronauts getting killed on a Russian spacecraft. On the other hand, I'm very happy that this problem occurred on an unmanned supply vehicle rather than anything with people on it. It is also a bit scary to note that even a very well-understood set of systems like the Soyuz still sometimes runs into such severe problems. Hopefully they will be able to identify what precisely caused this problem.

Re:Second loss in a week (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37195258)

Well, they did just update the systems to hardened Pentiums from 386s.. Perhaps the math bug?

Re:Second loss in a week (4, Insightful)

TehHustler (709893) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195950)

This is most likely a quality control issue, not a design issue which would have turned up in the last 40 years, you would think.

Wait we rely on these guys? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194496)

Wait, are we relying on these guys to get us into space... great.
Nasa better step up their game..

Re:Wait we rely on these guys? (1)

PyroMosh (287149) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194734)

Without any data to show that the Russians did anything worng, I'm not sure why you say that.

NASA, the Air Force, the ESA... everyone that's launched any number of rockets into orbit has lost some. Even if you don't make stupid mistakes, you can never be sure you've anticipated everything.

This *is* rocket science.

We don't know what happened. But to say that the Russians are somehow incompetent is laughable at this point.

Re:Wait we rely on these guys? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37195382)

This *is* rocket science.

Well yeah, but it's not like it's brain surgery or anything...

In Soviet Russia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194518)

supply ship burn on you!

Trust Ruskies...or NASA? (0)

BoRegardless (721219) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194522)

l just don't trust Russia now, don't trust their space program to serve the U.S., never trusted them in the past and Putin's statement show me I can't trust them in the future.

Our legislators need to revisit how they direct and fund NASA. It doesn't mean NASA doesn't need to change, but NASA overseeing plans to keep us in space are a matter of the Federal Government's proper duty under the constitution to protect the U.S.'s interests and protect our borders.

Re:Trust Ruskies...or NASA? (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194646)

American pork barrel is no match for Russian vodka barrel!

Our corrupt politicians make yours look like amateurs!

Re:Trust Ruskies...or NASA? (1)

PyroMosh (287149) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194798)

Why? Because this couldn't have happened to NASA? The Air Force? The Navy? Space-X? The ESA?

Who of that group has a lossless record? None of them. This *is* rocket science!

Maybe the Russians really screwed up here. Maybe there's a reason not to trust them. But at this point? We don't know anything, except that the Russians failed to do one of the most complicated things that human beings do. That's hardly a terrible indictment.

Re:Trust Ruskies...or NASA? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37195646)

"never trusted them in the past"

Why not? They have a better overall track record than the Americans, and they can still loft cargo and people, also unlike the Americans.

ISS Burns? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194674)

The ISS Burns? Excellent...

stupid gravity (4, Funny)

SeeSp0tRun (1270464) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194676)

If it had only made it higher and exploded, they would have lost 0 tonnes of supplies.
Damn you gravity. Damn you!

Re:stupid gravity (2, Funny)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194720)

If it had only made it higher and exploded, they would have lost 0 tonnes of supplies.
Damn you gravity. Damn you!

It could've been worse. If the supply ship had been close to Jupiter, the losses would've been much higher.

Re:stupid gravity (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194892)

tonne is a measure of mass, even without gravity, objects would still have mass...

Re:stupid gravity (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#37194746)

A tonne (metric) is 1000 kg, and thus is a unit of mass. Gravity doesn't change that.

Unmanned disasters are important! (1)

goodmanj (234846) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194816)

We're all saying "well thank goodness it's not a manned spacecraft, no big deal."

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't a Progress basically a Soyuz with the seats ripped out? Which is to say, don't unmanned Progress mission failures tell you something important about the likelihood of manned Soyuz disasters?

Re:Unmanned disasters are important! (4, Informative)

0123456 (636235) | more than 2 years ago | (#37194912)

Which is to say, don't unmanned Progress mission failures tell you something important about the likelihood of manned Soyuz disasters?

Had it been manned, the escape system would have fired and brought the crew back down. As far as I remember that's already happened once on a Soyuz flight and the biggest problem was that the crew had to hide from hungry wolves after the landing.

One of the benefits of capsules is that you don't die just because the wings fell off and you need them to come back down.

Re:Unmanned disasters are important! (1)

drotte (1487055) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195986)

It failed well into the third stage burn, that seems far too late to successfully escape.

Does that mean... (1)

multimediavt (965608) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195448)

Yard Sale?!?! Wonder where it's gonna land. I could use some supplies. :)

USAF OTV Option? (2)

FurtiveGlancer (1274746) | more than 2 years ago | (#37195834)

Though the capacity is rather small, I wonder if the X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle [time.com] could carry critical supplies to the ISS? It's designed for quick turn-around and maneuverability. Would have to spacewalk for those supplies, though. No docking system on OTV that I know of.
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