Soyuz rocket failure was caused by sensor damage

(CNN)Russian investigators probing the failed launch of a Soyuz rocket transporting a crew to the International Space Station last month said damage to a sensor during the rocket’s assembly led to the malfunction that forced an emergency landing.

Oleg Skorobogatov, the head of the commission probing the failure, announced the findings at a news conference Thursday in the Moscow region. He said the “abnormal separation” of the booster could be attributed to damage to the sensor. This caused the failure of a lid opening to an oxidizer tank’s nozzle cover.
“The launch ended … due to the abnormal separation of one of the side blocks (block D) that hit the central block (block A ) in the fuel tank, which led to its depressurization and, consequently, to the loss of stabilization of the space rocket,” Skorobogatov told reporters.

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