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Posted

[video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=RuGBaNGPr5w[/video]

No flight termination charges, Russian launches don't usually use them. They just cut the engines, and here even that's questionable. They may have tried to get it further from the complex First major lower stage failure of Proton since the 80's, though one in '69 was nearly identical to this one.

Something is major broke in the Russian space program :(

http://www.russianspaceweb.com/index.html

Russia's Proton crashes with a trio of navigation satellites

2013 July 2

Russia's Proton rocket crashed less than a minute after its liftoff from Baikonur, Kazakhstan, Monday.

A Proton-M with a Block DM-03 upper stage lifted off as scheduled from Pad No. 24 at Site 81 in Baikonur Cosmodrome on July 2, 2013, at 06:38:22 Moscow Time (on July 1, 10:38 p.m. EDT).

The rocket started veering off course right after leaving the pad, deviating from the vertical path in various directions and then plunged to the ground seconds later nose first. The payload section and the upper stage were sheered off the vehicle moments before it impacted the ground and exploded. The flight lasted no more than 30 seconds.

The Russian space agency's ground processing and launch contractor, TsENKI, was broadcasting the launch live and captured the entire process of the vehicle's disintegration and its crash. Half an hour after the accident, a report on Russian web forums said that a team in the launch control bunker near the launch pad had been in communication with the rest of the space center and apparently had been unharmed. The launch vehicle reportedly crashed near another launch complex for Proton rockets at Site 200.

Since the emergency cutoff of the first stage engines is blocked during the first 42 seconds of the flight to ensure that the rocket clears the launch complex, the vehicle continued flying with its propulsion system firing practically until the impact on the ground.

Around an hour after the accident, a Russian Vesti 24 TV channel reported that Kazakh authorities had considered evacuating population from the area around the crash site due to a possible danger from toxic propellants onboard the rocket. The main residential area of Baikonur Cosmodrome is located 57 kilometers southeast of the Proton launch area.

During the evacuation, some of the personnel at Baikonur took photos of a reddish cloud spanning over the main road to the facility. In Baikonur itself, the city's administration advised residents not to leave their homes, deactivate air conditioners and close tightly all doors and windows due to "a cloud of unburned propellant moving toward towns of Baikonur, Akai and Tyuratam." Fortunately, starting rain apparently helped to dissipate the cloud, Kazakh media reported.
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Posted

Yeah, the video of the crash is quite epic.

 

http://youtu.be/cmesucXpFXw

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Posted

Just saw this on the news, pretty bad.

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Posted

While the Proton lower stage has had a good record since the 80's this and the other failures may push Congress to get our astronauts off Russian birds ASAP until it gets sorted out. That would require speeding up the US commercial crew program.

Dragon's first crewed flight is set for mid-2015, while Dream Chaser is 2016 and CST-100 soon after. Dragon probably has the best shot at speeding up.

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Posted

It's kind of sad we aren't building the ships like you see in Europa Report right now :(

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Posted

After watching that vid I was kinda expecting something a little more devastating than a little explosion - especially after reading the story that brought me here. 
Little badda boom, definitely not a big one.

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Posted

Are uou joking? That would have taken out several city blocks, not to mention that big brown cloud is HIGHLY toxic hyprrgolic fuel. If done intentionally it would classify as a WMD.

It's kind of sad we aren't building the ships like you see in Europa Report right now :(


Wait til you see SpaceX's MCT architecture.

Officially: MCT = Mars Colony Transport

Amateur video of the Proton failure -

[video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zl12dXYcUTo[/video]
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Posted

After watching that vid I was kinda expecting something a little more devastating than a little explosion - especially after reading the story that brought me here. 
Little badda boom, definitely not a big one.

Well the cost was probably astronomical! I noticed the top stage "ejected" with a parachute, hopefully there isn't too much damage to the payload then.

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Posted

You can almost tell right away that the launch doesn't look right.

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Posted

Wait til you see SpaceX's MCT architecture.

Officially: MCT = Mars Colony Transport

Amateur video of the Proton failure -

[video]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zl12dXYcUTo[/video]

Wow awesome, notice how it took a while for the shock wave to hit? :P

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Posted

Well the cost was probably astronomical! I noticed the top stage "ejected" with a parachute, hopefully there isn't too much damage to the payload then.

The cargo fairing just snapped off from the high-G turnover, and even if there were 'chites it was too low for them to open. It's a total loss.

The launcher probably cost $100-150 million, plus another $200m plus for the satellites. Not sure if they are insuring Russian Federal launches like they do commercial ones.

Might be hard to get an affordable rate given the troubles they're having. Normally launch insurance bases out at about $15-$20 million then rises with the cost of the satellite, so it's not a trivial item.

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Posted

Happy 4th of July!!!!!

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Posted

It just missed Proton Site 200, so it was a close call as far a losing other pads.

Pravda is reporting a 200 meter crater.

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Posted

Doc, the comments on that RT.com site are pretty funny, I got a good laugh out of them. I just looked up the schedule for the ISS, and there was suppose to be supplies going up from Baikonur on the 24th of July. Then new crew on the 25th of September. 

 

Do you know if NASA have a plan since they will not be able to use Baikonur for the next coupe of months.

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Posted

The next Dragon cargo flight isn't until Q4 so it won't help. Antares / Cygnus is probably after that given their slippages, and another ESA ATV is even further to the right because one just got there. The next Japanese HTV goes up from Tanegashima on Aug. 4.

The big problem is that Baikanur is at the proper latitude for Soyuz / Progress ISS launches without having to do a big dogleg turn, which eats into their already tight fuel margins. The Soyuz booster just isn't that powerful.

They're stuck.

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Posted

Do you know if NASA have a plan since they will not be able to use Baikonur for the next coupe of months.

 

Manned Soyuz rockets can still be launched from Plesetsk Cosmodrome.

 

Happy 4th of July!!!!!

 

Enjoy it! The Russian Intelligence already had their early Christmas present when they got a hold of Snowden's hard-drive last week.

 

Amateur video of the Proton failure -

 

Love the punch line: "let's get the **** out of here" :D

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Posted

Manned Soyuz rockets can still be launched from Plesetsk Cosmodrome.

ISS orbits at a 51

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Posted

Bloody hell that was scary!

 

The delayed shockwave in the amateur video is just as frightening - if not more so - than the sight of the explosion itself.

I kept thinking to myself 'Here it comes, here it come...' then BOOM!

 

Apologies in advance for my ignorance, but have similarly designed rockets been used to launch humans into orbit, or are they primarily intended for cargo/satellites?

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Posted

Proton is a medium-Heavy cargo, satellite and probe launcher. Russia launches crews only on the Soyuz-FG. This may change if they get the new Angara rocket family off the ground, and that will also bring in a new crew / cargo spacecraft to replace Soyuz TMA-M and Progress. Very Dragon-like.

What made this particularly bad is the fuel / oxidizer used by Proton: 600 metric tons of unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine and nitrogen tetroxide, both toxic as all hell. Even with a normal launch area livestock die.

Soyuz-FG, like Atlas V, F9 and later Angara, uses kerosene and liquid oxygen - far less toxic.

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Posted

This amateur vid is better than the news crew.  Better sense of height and where it crashed.

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Posted

Yup.

This is causing a big sh**storm too as major satellite outfits like SES are getting nervous. This was the 4th Proton failure in the last few years and these companies have payloads on site, not sure if they'll end up in orbit or subterranean. F9 v1.1 is ramping up, Ariane is $$ etc.

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Posted

nice 5th Element reference :)

 

on a side note, the Russian Space Program is really screwed. :/

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Posted

Yup. They'd better ramp up the Angara program ASAP - and call in help if they need it as a lot of things in their manufacture & processing truely is screwed.

BTW: my count was off - this is the 5th Proton failure in the last 3+ years. Sad.

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Posted

Doc, the comments on that RT.com site are pretty funny, I got a good laugh out of them. I just looked up the schedule for the ISS, and there was suppose to be supplies going up from Baikonur on the 24th of July. Then new crew on the 25th of September. 

 

Do you know if NASA have a plan since they will not be able to use Baikonur for the next coupe of months.

 

Space elevator.

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