The two astronauts relied on the spacecraft itself to disengage from the rocket and return to the ground with the help of a parachute, during which time an uncontrollable "ballistic descent" was experienced. The onboard computer automatically triggers an emergency escape system that essentially separates the Soyuz cabin from the rocket and throws the parachute, leaving the astronauts harmless.
After landing safely on the ground, Hague described the experience as "quite radical but fleeting."
Since the end of the space shuttle program in 2011, the Soyuz spacecraft has become the only means of transport for astronauts to and from the International Space Station, but this situation will soon change. Last week, the SpaceX manned "Dragon" spacecraft was successfully unmanned for the first time and successfully docked with the International Space Station. The first manned test flight of the manned "Dragon" spacecraft may take place in July. Boeing's Starliner spacecraft will also be flying for the first time.
After a short investigation, the Soyuz was successfully launched again on December 3, carrying three astronauts to the International Space Station. Now Hague and Ovchinin and NASA Space Agency Christina Koch will take the Soyuz spacecraft to the International Space Station on Thursday, March 14.
The launch is scheduled to take place at 12:14 pm at the Baikonur Space Launch Site in Kazakhstan. The three men plan to arrive at the space station after six hours.
Ovchinin told the Russian news agency TASS: "After the last launch was not successful, we talked with psychologists. We have some chat meetings. As far as I know, all of us are relieved, we are fine. I believe this time. We will succeed."