www.eurockot.com, 11/30/2021


As Cause of Failure is Found, Commission Cleares Rockot for Future Missions

The cause of the Rockot launch failure with the subsequent loss of the CryoSat satellite on 8th October 2005 has been identified by the Russian State Commission investigating the incident: The launch of CryoSat had failed minutes after nominal lift-off, separation of the first stage and jettisoning of the payload fairing half shells when the flight control system did not execute the command to shut-down the second stage main engine. Separation of the second and third stages did not occur and the stack including CryoSat exploded in mid-air, its debris falling into the drop zone for the second stage close to the North Pole.

Following the unambiguous identification of the reason for the failure, the Russian Space Forces' Deputy Commander had already announced the clearance of the launch vehicle for future use including missions for the Russian Ministry of Defence on 25th October 2005.

The Failure Investigation Board with representatives from EADS SPACE Transportation, Khrunichev and Eurockot has prepared the Final Investigation Report concerning the loss of the CryoSat mission with the support of the European Space Agency (ESA) for which CryoSat had been launched. This report contains corrective actions for all future missions of Rockot and was released during December 2005.