A solar panel on manned Soyuz fails to deploy

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One of the two solar panels on the manned Soyuz capsule transporting three astronauts to ISS has failed to deploy.

“According to our data, one of the solar panels is still unable to unfold for reasons unknown. But preliminary data suggest that it will not impede [the spacecraft] from docking to the ISS. They have carried out a maneuver just now which involved all of the spacecraft’s engines, all systems are running smoothly, the crew is OK,” the source in the agency said.

Because they are flying the fast route to ISS a shortage of power is not as critical. However, this failure once again indicates the increasing quality control problems faced by the Russian aerospace industry. In past decades these problems simply did not happen, especially on their manned missions. Now they are happening with increasing frequency.


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