[VIDEO] $28 Million Russian Satellite Explodes During LaunchPosted: May 18, 2014
For The Daily Caller, Giuseppe reports: A Russian rocket carrying the the country’s most-expensive, state-of-the-art communications satellite exploded minutes after takeoff and before reaching space on Friday.
Russian state media reports the Proton-M rocket took off Baikonur, Kazakhstan and, after ascending about 100 miles, veered off course and disintegrated in the atmosphere some nine minutes into flight when the Russian Federal Space Agency lost contact.
The failed rocket took an Express-AM4P European-built communications satellite valued around $28 million along with it.
RT covered the launch live.
“The exact cause is hard to establish immediately, we will be studying the telemetry. Preliminary information points to an emergency pressure drop in a steering engine of the third stage of the rocket,” Russian Federal Space Agency Chief Oleg Ostapenko said.
Friday’s failed launch marks the second time in a year-span that a Proton-M glitch has scrapped a launch. An unexpected engine shut down 17 seconds into a flight last July resulted in another crash one mile outside Baikonur’s launch pad. The destruction of the billion-dollar satellite is Russia’s sixth launch failure in just as many years.
Russian President Vladimir Putin fired the former chief of the Russian Federal Space Agency (commonly referred to as Roscosmos) last October after less than two years on the job, and appointed Ostapenko to overhaul the troubled program – an endeavor that’s cost the government billions already…(read more)
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