Just wondering if Nick Hague got his gold astronaut wings.

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    $\begingroup$ "The iconic four boosters are called the first stage. It takes only two minutes for them to burn up and deliver their thrust – by this time Paolo, Randy and Sergey will be flying 41 km high travelling at 8300 km/h and have traveled 39 km over land." - from another article, about Soyuz. 8300km/h with a horizontal distance of 39km you could calculate the vertical velocity component and know their apogee if the second stage didn't fire at all. 41km high already and going 2.306 km/s total (assuming it's all upward velocity, though it wasn't)... $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 11, 2018 at 21:27
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    $\begingroup$ I’m not sure about Nick, but I think I would’ve got my brown astronaut wings... $\endgroup$
    – Jack
    Commented Oct 11, 2018 at 22:06
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    $\begingroup$ Best information I've seen so far is at twitter.com/planet4589/status/1050440893302489089 $\endgroup$
    – djr
    Commented Oct 11, 2018 at 22:17
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    $\begingroup$ USAF astronauts get their wings at 80km, not 100km. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Astronaut_Badge#Eligibility $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 11, 2018 at 23:51
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    $\begingroup$ @RussellBorogove I was eagerly awaiting the rules-lawyering to start! But how about his gold astronaut pin? $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 11, 2018 at 23:55

1 Answer 1



From Ars Technica, the failure came around the T+2:00 mark, which would have been close to when staging happens

What we know is that at about two minutes, there was some sort of failure with the first stage of the rocket and/or its strap-on boosters. (Rumors are circulating that perhaps one or two of the boosters didn't properly separate from the first stage).

The ESA has a video about the Soyuz, which notes that it would be about 40km up at that time

That is consistent with, say, a Falcon 9 Block V

Falcon 9 at 2 mins

It's also consistent with this tweet mentioned in the comments

Correction to my earlier tweet: the failure happened at 50 km altitude, not 82 km. Apogee would have been close to 80 km, so possibly space by my definition but not by the 100 km definition

So he got out of the atmosphere, but didn't cross the Karman line, sadly.

ISS picture of the failed Soyuz

Later edit: So close! russianspaceweb.com reports apogee of 93 km.

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    $\begingroup$ +1 Would be handy to get some exact telemetry to confirm the apogee, but that possibly won’t be available for a while $\endgroup$
    – Jack
    Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 15:28
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    $\begingroup$ Upvoted, but I'm gonna wait a while for a nice graph or something definitive from one of the agencies. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 15:59
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    $\begingroup$ Depending on just how "close to 80 km" it got, the crew might be astronauts by the US Air Force definition (50 miles). $\endgroup$
    – Mark
    Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 18:52
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    $\begingroup$ The Russian crewmember is an experienced cosmonaut, this is not his first rodeo. $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 12, 2018 at 19:16
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    $\begingroup$ The Karman line is one (of several possible different) definition of the boundary between Earth's atmosphere and outer space. If this definition is used, you can't get out of the atmosphere without crossing the Karman line. $\endgroup$
    – Uwe
    Commented Oct 13, 2018 at 13:50

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