back to article Hi-def ExoMars launch vid lacks volcanic lair vibe

We're obliged to those readers who pointed us in the direction of a hi-def vid of yesterday's ExoMars mission launch, in which Europe's Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) and Schiaparelli "entry, descent and landing demonstrator module" (EDM) thundered aloft from Baikonur Cosmodrome atop a Proton-M rocket. Magnificent, but compare that …

  1. Reginald Marshall

    That poor bird...

    "To think that we've finally found a nice, quiet place in the steppe, and now this...!"

    1. Annihilator

      Re: That poor bird...

      Presumably the ones that didn't get out by 9 seconds into the video, didn't get out at all..

  2. Professur

    I quite liked Dr. Evil's launch myself.

  3. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. WonkoTheSane

      Sadly, there is no longer "still time". We lost Sir Ken last Thursday.

      'Splody icon, because that's how his Bond sets often ended up.

      1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

        [Original post withdrawn & resubmitted due to embarrassing mispeling... and edited for the sad news which inexplicably had escaped me...]

        I have been saying it for years, ESA should have hired Sir Ken Adam while there was still time and have him design some some proper launching sites and control rooms and so on.

        Saw an exhibition about his life & work last year in Berlin - both are were truly extraordinary.

        Godspeed Klaus - you always were one of the good guys.

  4. TheProf


    For a film so highly praised for it 'scientific accuracy', Interstellar has a quite bonkers rocket launch: a Saturn V lifting-off from an underground base.

    Blofeld must have been the technical advisor.

    1. BristolBachelor Gold badge

      Re: Bonkers

      If you want to build a rocket without anyone knowing about it, what's wrong with underground? Quite a few of the Russian launches I've seen actually came out of holes in the ground. Of course, as son as it launches everyone within miles knows about it, but that's another issue.

      1. AdamT

        Re: Bonkers

        There was a recent satellite launch on some similar flavour of converted ICBM (perhaps this one: ) where it looks like, even though above ground, there is still some kind of tube that the rocket launches from.

        I'm sure there's a technical reason (something to do with the rocket engine expecting a certain back pressure from an underground launch tube?) but it's also amusing to just consider that the rockets get nervous in the open air so they're given a little tube to hide in until it's time to go...

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: Bonkers

      Saturn V lifting-off from an underground base

      Lifting off from underground bases is like bacon: It makes everything better and pleases the white fluffy cat overlords.

  5. ravenviz
    Thumb Up

    Love the James Bond rocket, when it comes in to land inside the volcano, the effect of 'fire coming out the bottom' with no discernible thrust really gets me munching my popcorn!

  6. Voland's right hand Silver badge

    Why do you expect it to be spectacular?

    This is Proton - M. The village bus.

    It ain't pretty and half of the engineering in it is determined by the limitations of Russian railways and nothing to do with rocketry, but it "just works" (TM).

  7. PaulAb

    I wish I was a spaceman

    I'm sure Steve Zodiac has come age, and the Doc and Venus and Zoony and deepmind, erm.... I mean Robert

    Damn you, SuperMarionation, Where are they when you need them most.

  8. LesC

    That's a nice transparent blue flame with mach diamonds looks like the rocket's burning n2o2 or acid & MMH / UDMH / hydrazine / Aerozine 50 or similar hydrazoid propellant. Hypergolics in a first stage now that's not seen every day.Typical Russian space truck these Proton rockets must be the Lada Nivas of the space industry - solid, chunky, clunky and they do exactly what's said on the tin.. Wonder if they still use hi-tensile bolts meant for steam locomotives?

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge


      All three stages, plus the Briz-M upper stage burn N2O4/UDMH. Old school stuff.

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