Feeds

back to article Russian cargoship fluffs Space Station docking test

Russian cargoship Progress M-15M has failed to couple with the International Space Station in a test of its new automated docking system. Russian 'Progress' cargo vessel as seen from the International Space Station Russian Progress not making much progress today Progress had already dropped off its supplies to the ISS, but it …

COMMENTS

This topic is closed for new posts.
Silver badge

Perhaps Elon Musk could lend them a hand?

4
0
Thumb Up

I was just thinking that it highlighted how far SpaceX had come in such a short time.

3
0
Thumb Down

Not quite

Dragon can't perform any sort of automated docking at all. The capsule is manouvered manually from the ground until it is close enough to be grabbed by the arm on the ISS. The ISS crew then dock the craft using the arm. Progress can dock automatically when it is manouvered close to the ISS whilst ESA's ATV is completely autonomous in that from the moment it launches it's on it's own. It steers it's own way to the ISS and once close enough performs it's own docking. No outside intervention required. Whilst Dragon is a wonderful achievement it has a long way to go before matching the automated Progress and ATV vehicles navigation and docking capabilities.

1
0

Re: Not quite

Understood, but Dragon got a lot closer without any issues than Progress did ;)

I don't think it will be long before Musk & Co. have a fully automated docking vehicle, given their progress to date.

0
0
Silver badge

"The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

If it ain't broke, don't fix it...

2
2
Silver badge

Re: "The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

It could be that they had to because parts for the existing system were becoming scarce.

0
0
Headmaster

Re: "The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

They often dismount bits of the existing Kurs system and bring them back for re-use if there's room available on a Soyuz return which helps stretch the supply, but there's also a "Not made in Russia" element going on. Significant parts of the old system are made in Ukraine and they're trying to reduce the dependence of their whole space programme on what are now foreign countries.

3
0
Silver badge

Re: "The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

One of the advantages of the new system is it only has 1 antenna instead of 5.

0
0

Re: "The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

It's not an advantage if it doesn't work.

3
0
Silver badge
Boffin

Re: "The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

"It's not an advantage if it doesn't work."

"there has been a time in the evolution of everything that works when it didn't work."

3
0
Bronze badge
IT Angle

Re: "The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

Or the software vendor stopped supplying the security patches for such an old and obsolete OS...

0
0
Anonymous Coward

Re: "The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

"It's not an advantage if it doesn't work."

I thought all the best software stopped working if you didn't pay for an upgrade at least once every couple of years?

Or is it only gullible IT departments that believe this rubbish?

0
0

Re: "The new system is an upgraded version of the existing Kurs automated docking system"

"there has been a time in the evolution of everything that works when it didn't work."

Except, one would think, reproductive organs.

0
0
Silver badge

Kurs-NA

Course (Kurs) Not Available?

0
0
Bronze badge

Re: Kurs-NA

More of a Kurs-related DNF. (Where's the F1 Icon?)

1
0
Silver badge

Re: Kurs-NA

So this one was designed by Adrian Newey?

0
0
E 2

24 hour refractory period? Not impressed.

1
0
Pint

So much traffic

Dragon capsule, Progress that wants to come back for more, Japanese unit,...

Sounds like it's getting busy up there.

And Dragon was not even capable of attempting an automated docking yet. It had to be grabbed by the Canadarm. Russia had automated docking years and years ago. I don't think NASA ever had automated docking capabilities.

They may be doing it with old parts and old technology, but the Russians do have some spacefaring tricks of their own.

Beer because it's National Tequila Day in the USA, and that's the closest available icon. Salud!

4
0
Bronze badge

Parking

During the last Shuttle flight to the ISS in 2011 the station had the Japanese HTV-2 cargo ship, a Progress cargo capsule, a Soyuz capsule and the European "Amaldi" ATV docked to it at various ports. The Shuttle's launch was delayed by a few days as the ATV was manoeuvering to dock with the ISS and the mission controllers didn't like the idea of having two separate spacecraft moving around in the vicinity of the station at the same time.

0
0

This post has been deleted by its author

Bronze badge
Thumb Up

Blimey, they're queuing up.

0
0
Silver badge

Yeah, and it won't be long before Blackpool Council try and put some speed cameras up there.

1
0
Bronze badge
Thumb Up

Space dimensions are awesome...

"The cargoship was 161km from the station when the glitch occurred and has now backed up to 484km, Russian space agency Roscosmos and Russian Mission Control said in a joint statement."

...aren't they? :) Docking was already under way from HUNDRED AND SIXTY KILOMETERS AWAY...? And it's backed up to almost FIVE HUNDRED kilometers just to try again?

It makes a difference when there's not much traffic around you, I guess.

0
0
Facepalm

I think I see the problem

It's backed up to 484km from the station. But the station is orbiting at just 408km from the Earth.

Therefore the cargo ship is now orbiting 76km below the surface of the Earth.

6
0
Silver badge

Re: I think I see the problem

Yeah, I just felt a rumble as it passed through the mantle underneath our office building...

1
0

Wot's that conversion from metric to imperial again?

0
0

1.6km ~= 1m, therefore:

161km ~= 100 miles

484km ~= 300 miles

I guess they are NASA distances converted to metric

1
0
Silver badge
Boffin

1.6km ~= 1m?

you have to draw the circle pretty big for that to be right...

1.6km = 1600m

(mi is miles, not m which is meters)

0
0
Silver badge

Metric? Imperial?

What are these strange units you speak of. Surely it should be in linguini or brontosaurus lengths or something.

2
0

Re: Metric? Imperial?

I assume you mean Apatosaurus lengths.

1
1

Re: Metric? Imperial?

Indeed. This would be much easier if we were using proper measurements with a basis in the real world, so here are some better figures.

ISS is currently orbiting at a height approximately equal to 121,689 African elephants standing on top of each other.

The Russian cargo ship was at a distance of roughly 14,636 London bus lengths from ISS when it had a problem, and it has since backed off to 44,000 London bus lengths.

They're both orbiting at around 45 megafurlongs per fortnight (it's hard to visualise this sort of speed, but if you imagine a Reg journalist heading towards a pint of beer on the other side of the room you probably won't be too far off).

6
0

Re: Metric? Imperial?

"They're both orbiting at around 45 megafurlongs per fortnight"

is that widdershins or sunwise?

0
0
This topic is closed for new posts.