The two-person crew aboard a Russian-made Soyuz rocket made an emergency landing in Kazakhstan today shortly after launch. The crew, which was traveling to the International Space Station, is reportedly safe and in “good condition” after the scary failure was broadcast on the web.
NASA astronaut Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Alexey Ovchinin launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan at 4:40am ET time this morning. As you can see from video of the NASA livestream, early reports indicate that the booster failed minutes after liftoff.
“The Soyuz capsule is returning to Earth via a ballistic descent, which is a sharper angle of landing compared to normal,” NASA tweeted. “Search and rescue teams are heading towards the expected touchdown location of the spacecraft and crew.”
The crew of the MS-10 landed roughly 12 miles east of Dzhezkazgan, Kazakhstan and was met by a search and recovery team that’s always prepared on the ground for a situation precisely like this. The crew is currently being brought to Moscow.
It’s been a rough few months for space travel, as today’s failure follows another recent incident aboard the International Space Station. Horrifyingly, a hole was recently discovered on a different Soyuz capsule, the MS-09, that was attached to the International Space Station in late August. The hole cause a small oxygen leak while hooked up to the ISS.
The Russian space agency Roscosmos tweeted that it’s creating a formal commission to investigate the rocket failure.
This article will be updated as we learn more. You can watch the livestream from NASA here.