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Russian Progress space truck crashes in Siberia

ISS supplies lost, station not rationing air just yet

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Updated The Russians have lost an unmanned Progress supply vessel which blasted off at 13:00 GMT today from Baikonur Cosmodrome en route to the International Space Station.

The country's Roscosmos space agency issued a brief statement explaining that the third stage of the Soyuz rocket tasked with lifting the space truck had failed 325 seconds after launch, and accordingly the Progress M-12M "was not placed in the correct orbit".

The BBC cites an Interfax news agency source as claiming the vessel crashed in Siberia, taking with it 1.5 tonnes of ISS supplies, including food, fuel and oxygen. ®

The ISS's Expedition 28 crew won't suffer as a result of the loss. Space shuttle Atlantis last month delivered enough supplies to keep the orbiting outpost and its inhabitants going for a year. ®

Updated to Add

The rocket was a Soyuz-U. The next manned launch of a similar Soyuz-FG on 22 September may now be postponed while Russian officials probe the cause of the failure.

Expedition 28 crew members Commander Andrey Borisenko and Flight Engineers Alexander Samokutyaev and Ron Garan were due to return to Earth on 7 September. They may now have to extend their stay on the ISS.

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