Russian cargo spaceship's launch failure leads to delays in crew landing, launch

Associated Press

Russian space officials say they have decided to delay both the landing of some of the International Space Station's crew and the launch of their successors due to the recent failed launch of an unmanned Russian cargo ship.

The chief of the Roscosmos space agency, Igor Komarov, said Tuesday that the April 28 launch failure was caused by a malfunction in the Soyuz rocket's third stage. Left in low orbit, the Progress cargo ship fell to Earth over the Pacific on May 8.

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Another official, Vladimir Solovyov, said three crew members who had been scheduled to return this week won't come back until early June. The station has a crew of six. He said the launch of a replacement crew will be pushed back from late May to late July.