It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
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.
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.