An unmanned Russian cargo spacecraft ferrying supplies to the International Space Station is plunging back to Earth and apparently out of control.The Russian space agency is trying to re-establish contact with the cargo vessel as it hurtles over ground stations, but is struggling because the 2.5 tonne spacecraft is tumbling.
“It has started descending. It has nowhere else to go,” an official familiar with the situation told Agence France-Presse on condition of anonymity on Wednesday. The official was speaking ahead of an official Russian space agency statement expected later in the day. “It is clear that absolutely uncontrollable reactions have begun.”
A Soyuz rocket carrying the Progress M-27M spacecraft with supplies for the International Space Station successfully launched on Tuesday, but communication with the vessel was lost soon afterwards.
The controllers had earlier opted to change the flight plan and extend the vessel’s journey to two days instead of six hours in a bid to fix the glitch.