A Russian cargo spaceship heading to the International Space busted up in the sky over Siberia on Thursday due to an unknown defect, told the Russian Space agency. The cargo was unmanned.
The Progress MS-04 cargo craft busted at an altitude of 190 kilometers from remote Tuva region in Siberia that borders Mongolia, Roscosmos told in a statement. It also told that most of spaceship’s debris burnt up as soon as it entered the atmosphere while some part fell to Earth on an uninhabited area.
Local people reported that they saw a flash of light and heard a loud thump west of the regional capital of Kyzyl, more than 3600 kilometers east of Moscow, the Tuva government told.
The cargo ship had moved up at 8:51 p.m. from Russia's space launch complex in Baikonur, Kazakhstan. The aim was to deliver 2.5 metric tons of fuel, water, food and other supplies. It would have been a landing pier to the space station on Saturday.
Roscosmos told that the craft was functioning normally. But things took a different turn when it stopped transmitting data just after 6 and half minutes of launch. The Russian space agency told that the experts were looking into for the malfunction and so could not describe it immediately.
This is the third botched launch of a Russian spacecraft in two years. A Progress cargo ship plunged into the Pacific Ocean in May 2015, and a Proton-M rocket carrying an advanced satellite broke up in the atmosphere in May 2014.
But both Roscosmos and NASA have affirmed that the crash of the ship would not affect the operations of orbiting space lab. The lab is currently home to a six-member crew including three cosmonauts from Russia, two NASA astronauts and one from the European Union.
Orbital ATK, NASA's other shipper, successfully sent up supplies to the space station in October, and a Japanese cargo spaceship is scheduled to launch a full load in mid-December.
NASA supplier SpaceX, meanwhile, has been grounded since a rocket explosion in September on the launch pad at Cape Canaveral, Florida. The company hopes that the launches will be resumed by December to deliver communication satellites.