Russian space agency accused of ‘short-term software flaw’ yesterday’s engine failure with its new science module. The propellers in the module unexpectedly fired hours after docking, moving the International Space Station out of its normal position. A software failure caused the Nauka module to think it had to withdraw from the station.
The space station, a football field-sized research laboratory floating 270 miles up in a shallow Earth orbit, was pushed 45 degrees from the orbit as Nauka’s propellers began firing. NASA said it lost positioning the minutes minutes later, but it was eventually restored to normal after the propellers of another Russian module responded to Nauka’s erroneous shots.
“Due to a short-term software failure, the direct command incorrectly enabled the module’s motors to be turned on, which led to some change in the direction of the entire complex,” the Russian segment of the space flight director Vladimir Solovyov said in a statement Friday morning.
Roscosmos is leading an investigation into defective propeller bombs and keeping its U.S. partners informed of possible repairs, NASA space station director Joel Montalbano told reporters on Thursday. The accident forced a delay Boeing’s planned launch of a non-recyclable Starliner capsule For the ISS, which was delivered on Friday at 14.53 ET and is now scheduled for Tuesday, August 3 at 13.20 ET, the agency announced opinion.
The space station and its new Russian module are now operating “normally,” Solovyov said, adding that “a reliable internal power and command interface and a power supply interface connecting the module to the station were created.” According to him, the station’s Russian astronauts Oleg Novitskiy and Pyotr Dubrov are balancing Nauka’s pressure and intend to get into the module to begin “cleaning up the atmosphere and starting normal regular work.”
Nauka, which means science in Russian, is a multi-purpose science module designed to hold cargo and people. Its long-delayed development began in 1995 and has undergone several design changes that raised the original release date from 2007 to 2021. Upon reaching space, it almost immediately encountered propulsion and communication problems that delayed its orbit. The module was successfully docked eight days later, on Thursday, before its propellers detached and pushed the station off track.