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Roscosmos official says leaving ISS crewless would be ‘undesirable’

October 12, 11:51 UTC+3

The International Space Station may be left without a crew and leaving it unmanned is a stipulated option

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Sergei Krikalyov

Sergei Krikalyov

© Alexander Shcherbak/TASS

CHKALOVSKY AERODROME /Moscow Region/, October 12. /TASS/. The International Space Station (ISS) may be left without a crew and leaving it unmanned is a stipulated option but specialists will try to avoid this scenario, Roscosmos Executive Director for Manned Programs Sergei Krikalyov said on Friday.

"Theoretically, the ISS can be left without a crew. An unmanned mode is stipulated. We will do everything possible to prevent this because the station was created for manned flights. The procedure to deactivate the station is prescribed but it is undesirable and we will try to avoid it," Krikalyov said.

The stay of the current crew on the space station may be extended by several days," the Roscosmos official said.

"Perhaps, we will extend the mission by several days but we can’t do this for long. We will try to speed up the launch of the next crew," he noted.

Soyuz launch failure

A Soyuz-FG carrier rocket with a manned Soyuz MS-10 spacecraft blasted off from the Baikonur spaceport in Kazakhstan to the International Space Station (ISS) on Thursday. The carrier rocket with the manned spacecraft lifted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome at 11:40 a.m. Moscow time.

The manned spacecraft carried Russian cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin (the commander of the Soyuz MS-10) and NASA astronaut Nick Hague.

The Soyuz booster aborted after its launch, after which the crew switched to the mode of a ballistic descent. The manned Soyuz MS-10 spacecraft landed in the Kazakh steppe.

As the press office of Russia’s Central Military District reported, rescuers recovered the crew from the descent capsule and the crew members are in good condition.

This is the first emergency with this type of carrier rockets over the past 35 years.

The cosmonauts underwent a medical check in the town of Baikonur, after which they were transported to Moscow.

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