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Solar Sail Launch Fails

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posted on Jun, 22 2005 @ 01:13 PM
This spacecraft seemed pretty interesting, but I guess it didn't get into orbit.

The world's first solar sail spacecraft crashed back to Earth when its booster rocket failed less than two minutes after Tuesday's takeoff, Russian space officials said Wednesday.

heres a link to an article

posted on Jun, 22 2005 @ 01:43 PM
Well it's not 100% doomed:

They did receive some signals shortly after it went into orbit, even though its in a lower orbit than it should be.
If it's still in orbit, it will automatically deploy the sail after 4 days.

posted on Jun, 22 2005 @ 02:29 PM
Okay, maybe this is just the 1980's Cold War side of me talking, but did anyone notice this part?

Past attempts to unfold similar devices in space have failed.

In 1999, Russia launched a similar experiment with a sun-reflecting device from its Mir space station, but the deployment mechanism jammed and the device burned up in the atmosphere.

In 2001, Russia again attempted a similar experiment, but the device failed to separate from the booster and burned in the atmosphere.

The project involved Russia's Lavochkin research production institute that built the vehicle and was financed by an organization affiliated to the U.S. Planetary Society.

Over and over... Russia.

It seems to me their quality control isn't exactly up to snuff. Why isn't America doing this project? Granted it would have cost about $4bil instead of a paltry $4mil, but at least it'd make it into space! If they got those guys who built the recent mars rover, it'd probably last till the next solar system (or get smashed up by the Oort cloud, either one)

Presently, they could stuff $100 bills in a model rocket tube, and use it for wadding, for all the good Russian engineering is doing with this project.

posted on Jun, 22 2005 @ 04:40 PM
Maybe they should have had a couple of guys up there, just, you know, to give the robotics a 'hand'...

If all the money wasted on all the assinine failed robotic experiments over the years had been focused on tried, reliable, manned rockets without wings, we would be dominating our own solar system publicly by now. Instead, we're behaving like an infant in a crib hurling pitiful robotic diapers over the rail instead of actually getting up the nerve to walk.

Space requires massively funded multinational efforts focused on the continuous launch of manned infrastructure-building missions.

The best robotic macroassembler and troubleshooter to be invented in the future will be a nanoassembled Von Neuman machine with an uncanny resemblance to man.

[edit on 22-6-2005 by Chakotay]


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