A Russian Soyuz rocket launched a military satellite into orbit on Thursday, the first successful launch after a similar rocket failed earlier this month to bring a crew to the International Space Station.
The Russian military said a Soyuz 2 booster rocket lifted from the Plesetsk launch facility in northwestern Russia.
A Sojus FG missile with NASA astronaut Nick Hague and Alexei Ovchinin of Roscosmos failed on October 11, two minutes after the flight, sending their emergency capsule back to earth in a sharp fall. The crew landed safely, but the Russian space agency Roskosmos had suspended all Soyuz launches until Thursday, until an investigation was pending.
The official body still has to pass its formal verdict, but investigators reportedly linked the failure with one element to the four side rocket boosters off the main stage that had been damaged during the final assembly of the Russian-leased Baikonur spaceport in Kazakhstan should.
Russian space officers are planning two more unmanned Soyuz launches before taking a crew to the space station. No date has yet been set for the crew to start, but it is expected in early December.
The current crew of the space station ̵
Air traffic controllers were able to operate the station without further passengers on board The Russian investigation continues into next year, but NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine said earlier this month that he expected Roscosmos to launch the next crew in December.
The Russian Soyuz spacecraft is currently the only vehicle to transfer crews to the following space station, the withdrawal of the US space shuttle fleet. Russia loses this monopoly with the arrival of SpaceX's Dragonline and Boeing Starliner capsules.
The crew's failure has given yet another blow to the Russian space program, which has been hit by a series of failed satellite launches in recent years. The October 11 accident was the first failed launch of the Russian space program since 1983, when two Soviet cosmonauts dropped off and landed safely after the explosion of a launch pad.