Russian Cargo Spacecraft's Test Fails

First Posted: Jul 24, 2012 10:02 AM EDT

An unmanned Russian cargo ship has failed to successfully dock with International Space Station (ISS), during tests deigned to facilitate future links ups. The Russian Mission controls have not specified any reason for this failure, and are still probing into this issue.

It was Sunday that the Progress craft got separated from the space station to perform a series of engineering tests and was also  to carry out an upgraded docking system that would facilitate future Russian missions to the stations.

According to the space agency, another new attempt is likely to be held that will take place on the Sunday after the unmanned Japanese spacecraft HTV 3 reaches the station. Russian Space Agency said in a statement that the troubles with the Progress vessel will not prevent the Japanese ship from docking.

According to a source in the Russian Mission Control Center told RIA-Novosti that if the second attempt at docking fails, the old systems could be used to link the cargo ship to the ISS.

There are currently six people on the space station, which orbits 350 kilometres (about 220 miles) above the Earth and is permanently occupied by an international crew.  American Sunita Williams, Japan's Akihiko Hoshide and Yury Malenchenko of Russia joined Russians Gennady Padalka and Sergei Revin and US astronaut Joseph Acaba at the orbiter earlier this month.

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