American astronaut Nick Hague (right) and Russian cosmonaut Alexey Ovchinin speak before taking off aboard a Soyuz MS-10 capsule to the International Space Station, in Baikonur, Kazakhstan, on October 11, 2018.
NASA says two astronauts from the USA and Russian Federation have been flown to the city of Dzhezkazgan in Kazakhstan en route to Moscow after an emergency landing following the failure of a booster rocket carrying them to the International Space Station.
Shortly before this writing, NASA published a statement that gave us further insight into what went wrong and the rescue mission that ensured Ovchinin and Hague were safe.
But the three-stage Soyuz booster suffered an unspecified failure of its second stage about two minutes after launching.
The capsule then began what Nasa termed a "ballistic descent", subjecting the crew to greater G-force - the force imposed on a body by rapid acceleration or deceleration - than during a normal landing.
Hague was born in the same year the U.S. and the Soviet Union launched their first joint space mission, the Apollo-Soyuz, or Soyuz-Apollo mission in 1975.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters the most important thing was that the two men were alive. The crew endured higher than normal G-force, but Russian and US space officials said they were in good condition. Spacewalks take extensive, long-term planning, so the crew and their teams back on Earth will have to come up with an alternative plan. The space agency recently announced the nine astronauts that will crew the test flights and first missions of the SpaceX Crew Dragon and Boeing CST-100 Starliner spacecraft. The Soyuz was scheduled to fly a shortened, six-hour flight trajectory that would have orbited the Earth four times before reaching the International Space Station.More news: Markets hammered after USA stocks rout
Hague and Ovchinin left their capsule, were examined by the search-and-rescue team, and began the journey back to Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to reunite with family members and NASA and Roscosmos officials.
The Russian Soyuz MS-09 crew craft and the Northrop Grumman Cygnus space freighter attached to the International Space Station. It was Hague's first rocket launch. Russian officials said they may spend the night in Baikonur before being flown to Star City, Russia's space training center outside Moscow, the Tass news agency said.
The crew already on the ISS will not be affected by Thursday's aborted mission, Russia's Tass news agency reported, quoting an unnamed source as saying they have enough supplies.
"An investigative group has been formed and officials are now examining the launch site, documents are being seized", the Investigative Committee said in a statement.
Russian space agency Roscosmos has released photographs of both astronauts being checked over after their abrupt landing.
He said all manned launches will be suspended pending an investigation into the cause of the failure.
It is also possible that this event could affect the next scheduled crew launch of three astronauts in December who were set to replace NASA astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor, Russian cosmonaut Sergey Prokopyev and Gerst. Russian officials have also insisted on a bigger role in a US -led plan to build a space station orbiting the moon.