Astronauts make emergency landing after escaping malfunctioning rocket

Selfie of Mars Curiosity rover

Wiseman's comments were echoed by Todd, who said that NASA was "very proud" of its relationship with the Russian space agency Roscosmos. "They have some great minds over there".

They were set to join the crew of Alexander Gerst, the station's first-ever German commander, as well as USA astronaut Serena Aunon-Chancellor and Russian cosmonaut Sergei Prokopyev.

Their capsule separated and landed 400km (250 miles) from the launch site.

Sergei Krikalyov, the head of Roscosmos' manned programs, said the launch went awry after one of the rocket's four boosters failed to jettison about two minutes into the flight, damaging the main stage and triggering the emergency landing.

But soon after the landing, USA and Russian officials said that rescue forces were in contact with the astronaut and cosmonaut. That's a diplomatic way to say the Russian booster failed, forcing the crew to perform a risky launch abort.

How have the crew fared?

A spokeswoman for the Canadian Space Agency said Thursday it has not received any information about Saint-Jacques' mission and doesn't yet know what the impact will be on his impending launch. After about 20 minutes of uncertainty, Russian officials confirmed the crew were OK, and had landed about 20km east of Dzhezkazgan, a city in central Kazakhstan. The image shows them sitting on a couch, hooked up to blood pressure monitors and oxygen monitors.

Neither the United States nor Russian Federation will be able to send astronauts to the ISS until investigators determine why a Soyuz rocket failed after blast-off on Thursday (Oct 11), complicating an already tricky launch calendar for 2019. They experienced 6.7 g's which is about equal to what Apollo astronauts felt during re-entry. "These are new spacecraft, and the engineering teams have a lot of work to do before the systems will be ready to fly". It would have been an uncomfortable ride back to Earth, however.

All trips to the ISS and back are undertaken using Russian spacecraft, as has been the case since the Americans retired their shuttles in 2011.

There is already much discussion about the current state of Russian industry and its ability to maintain the standards of yesteryear.

Climate change responsible for depression, anxiety
Likewise, natural disasters, such as major hurricanes or flooding incidents, leads to a four percent jump in mental-crisis risk. A five year warming of the climate by 1 degree Celsius was associated with a 2 percent rise in mental health problems.

What does this mean for future Soyuz missions? "We don't normally pay attention to launches like this because they happen so often".

Relations between the US and Russian Federation have been very tense in recent years.

A manufacturing error could be to blame, Interfax news agency quoted an unnamed Russian space expert as saying.

The International Space Station - a rare point of cooperation between Moscow and Washington - has been orbiting the Earth since 1998.

Have there been similar incidents in the past?

A source at the Baikonur space center told Sputnik on Thursday that all Russian manned launches had been suspended after the Soyuz accident. Then, a rocket malfunctioned shortly before launch, and the crew vehicle was ejected to safety.

In recent years, Russia's space programme has faced a number of technical failures - 13 since 2010.

This mishap could also have major implications for NASA's plans to get astronaut's launching from the USA again in the next few years.

The United States is developing commercial space launches but problems with the Soyuz present a headache for NASA, which has a policy of having a continuous presence in space.

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