Spektr-R is Russia’s only orbiting space telescope. And, it stopped responding to its control staff. This latest Russian space equipment breakdown leaves one wondering, will Russia’s nuclear rocket explode before its launch?
Spektr-R Does Not Respond to Control Staff
The orbiting space telescope, Spektr-R, is not responding to its control staff. Spektr-R has a 33-foot antenna dish that works with ground radio telescopes. It worked past its 5 years expected lifespan. However, it stopped responding on Friday. After the breakdown, there were attempts to re-connect with the spacecraft.
The initial plans for the spacecraft included launching it in 2004 or 2005, but there were multiple delays. Thus, Spektr-R launched in 2011. Although the launch was late, the action shows that Russia did not give up on its space program.
Is Russia Building a Nuclear Rocket?
There are reports that Russia is building a nuclear space propulsion engine. For decades, the U.S. and the old Soviet Union researched nuclear rockets. Many believe that the engine will help Russia stay competitive in the space race.
Russian Nuclear Rocket to Explode Before the Launch?
While the reports claim that Russia is making progress on the nuclear engine, there are doubts that a Russian nuclear rocket launch will succeed. This is because Russia has made some physical models and video simulations, but it has not shown a working model to the public.
Certainly, Russia hopes that its nuclear rocket program will succeed. But, it will first have to take care of issues with its space industry. Some of these cases concern corruption. There is an example in 2015 when one of Russia’s main launch systems suppliers was accused of stealing $128M.
Even more, there was a string of Russian Soyuz failures. With the launch failure of a Russian Soyuz spacecraft in 2018, there are more doubts that a Russia nuclear rocket launch will succeed. And, it is possible that the nuclear rocket launch could fail due to reasons such as faulty equipment.
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