DNA - Sputnik International
Science & Tech
Discover the latest science and technology news from Sputnik including the inventions and scientific breakthroughs that are shaping the world.

Pyrobolt failure caused Soyuz bumpy re-entry - Roscosmos

MOSCOW, May 24 (RIA Novosti) - A failure of a pyrobolt separating spacecraft's modules caused the ballistic landing of Russia's Soyuz TMA-11 capsule in April this year, the head of the Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) said on Saturday.

On April 19, the Soyuz-TMA-11 capsule, carrying U.S. astronaut Peggy Whitson, Russian flight engineer Yuri Malenchenko, and Korean bioengineer Yi So-yeon from the International Space Station, made a bumpy re-entry, landing 420 km (260 miles) off-target in the steppes of northern Kazakhstan.

"The main cause has been established," Anatoly Perminov said. "One of the five separating pyrobolts failed and the separation [of the landing capsule from the equipment bay] occurred later, when the landing capsule entered the plasma."

The spacecraft should have landed to the north of the town of Artalyk, but it came down near the Kazakh-Russian border, to the southeast of the Russian town of Orsk, due to a "ballistic re-entry."

During ballistic re-entry, the capsule follows a much steeper descent trajectory, and the crew is subjected to much higher G-forces than normally experienced.

In October 2007, a Soyuz capsule carrying Malaysia's first astronaut also landed off course and in 2003, the crew had to wait for several hours until rescuers located them.

To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала