A Russian rocket carrying a U.S. satellite crashed into the Pacific this morning. No one was hurt, thankfully, but this isn't exactly good news for Russian commercial rockets--or the company that organized this launch.
It's not clear yet exactly what happened to the Zenit-3SL rocket. It was carrying a telecommunications satellite made by Boeing, Intelsat-27, and the launch was organized by Sea Launch, a company owned by a Russian-led consortium that's headed by another company headquartered in Switzerland. (You can read a semi-vintage 1999 Popular Science article about it here, if you're so inclined.) Sea Launch has been setting up launches since 2011, after returning from Chapter 11 bankruptcy following another crash in 2007. (These flights are expensive, and a crash doesn't yield much return on investment.) The launch was at sea, south of the Hawaiian islands, and operators worked from a support vessel 6.5 kilometers away.
The last few months haven't been good for Russian rockets in general: there've been a few high-profile crashes of Russia's Proton rocket--one of the most popular satellite-towing ships available--and the bad publicity doesn't bode well for commercial interests.
In the meantime, Sea Launch says it'll create a review board to find out what went wrong. (But no, it was not the West meddling with Russia.)
Time to start working with SpaceX.
Russia, a former enemy, now a competitor is the wrong partner for any undertaking.
Russia has a very poor track record in the creation and application of any kind of technology.
The stupidity of the current administration which has made America dependent on outside sources for orbital vehicles cannot be understated.
That's what happens when you outsource. I imagine there wouldn't be any type of insurance for rockets and satellites. Imagine the deductible. :)
the stupidity of the ignorant republicans who think they are entitles to their own facts never ceases to amaze me. Us young people will NEVER let another right winger in thewhite house. you can believe that.
and besides shouldnt you be on a bible thumping, dinosaurs roamed with people website anyway?
dumbass. hillary 2016!!!!!
by the way, i meant to misspell your name ass
To call someone ignorant for drinking the kool-aid of a political party who doesn't give a shit about you, but then turns around and drinks up what the every bit as idiotic other side hands you is completely retarded. And, I can say retarded all I f****** want, because I'm not p.c. I don't give a shit about this two party clusterf*** system. It makes me sick watching all you dumbass' mindlessly choosing sides, but I guess it makes you feel like you have friends when you're surrounded by millions of other sheep.
Well said VecTron.
United we stand, Divided we fall. And people like lostausername don't seem to care just as long as they can claim to be one up on someone else. But hey, what are ya gonna do? They're young! ;)
Divide and conquer is a lesson that seems to have been forgotten by more than just the young though.
The most basic lesson learned growing up use to be that if you fight over something mom or dad takes it away from both of you and no one is happy. If you think about it, it's the only answer to the problem. So when we lose a lot of our way of life because the government will be forced to 'solve the problem' of left versus right, we'll have no one else to blame but ourselves. I wish everyone would start compromising and talking and stop all the name calling, and remembering that before liberal and conservative we are AMERICANS FIRST.
And I don't know who came up with this idea of outsourcing our space program but whoever it was really f*cked us royally! We need private industry to step up quick before all is lost.
Today's magic is tomorrow's technology.
Actually based on its launch performance and backlog of orders, the European Arianespace has been the world’s leading launch company for years now. Capturing more than 50% of the commercial satellite launch market. Launches take place on the Ariane 5 and European Soyuz 50/50 coop.
Also on the new ESA VEGA rocket that is now being implemented and a very cheap alternative for launching small satellites. Then we have the Ariane 6 that is now in it`s early stages of developed and should greatly reduce launch cost of lager satellites as well. The Ariane 5 even launches super big payloads like ESA`s Automated Transfer Vehicle and the Ariane 5 will also launch the James Webb space telescope once NASA finally completed it (ESA is a big partner in James Webb as well as Hubble).
Sadly, Sea Launch and the Zenit rocket have a poor reliability record. The Zenit is an old design, but it is cheap, so that's why Sea Launch uses it. The rocket with the best safety record is the Saturn V. The McDonnell-Douglas Delta II rocket also has an impressive success record. The Ariane 5, Delta 4, or Atlas 5 boosters still have too few launches to prove themselves.
The Saturn V never flew enough to fully established it's safety record.
The Saturn I 10 times the IB 9 times and the V 13 times.
The Apollo 6 Saturn V was a partial failure.
The Delta IV and Atlas V have flown 21 and 35 times respectively.
The Atlas V has flown more then all versions of Saturn combined.
One of the most reliable LVs for over 100+ launches ironically was STS.
Only one ascent failure out of 135 launches and one reentry failure.
"The Saturn V never flew enough to fully established it's safety record."
and this line,
"The Atlas V has flown more then all versions of Saturn combined."
When I combine and think about them, confuses me. I think more elaboration is needed. Take care. ;)
The reliability record for manned launchers like the Shuttle and Saturn V are more impressive than those for unmanned launchers. The manned launch systems have far more demanding design requirements than unmanned systems.
Regardless, the Atlas V and Ariane 5 are both very impressive designs.
NASA knows there are still highly useful characteristics in the F-1 engine, and the Saturn V was an Apollo rocket. It is highly doubtful it would be an Apollo rocket even though it would surely use elements of that rocket configuration. The payload deployment of that style rocket is efficient. That style of module stack is efficient for it's two ship function.
The typical drop sections are useful too, in shape and material. We shouldn't EVER be deorbiting any mass that we have expended treasure and effort to put up there. Make a trashcan drone out of them and start filling them with space junk. Start making universal pressurized modules out of them and sell them to our partners and our public. Make modules that collect free hydrogen for fuel. Put a multipurpose robot on each one for spacecraft repair. Make a module that catches and stores a solar beamline.
QUIT WASTING WHAT YOU ARE GIVEN TO PUT UP THERE.