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Mir power failure postpones Progress launch
Posted: Thu, Jan 18, 2001, 9:45 AM ET (1445 GMT)
Mir space station A power failure onboard the Mir space station forced Russian officials to postpone for several days Thursday's launch of a Progress spacecraft that will help deorbit the station. The power failure was noticed by ground controllers during a communications pass at 8:30 pm EST Wednesday (0130 GMT Thursday), about five and a half hours before the Progress M1-5 spacecraft was scheduled to launch from Baikonur, Spaceflight Now reported. The power failure took the station's gyroscopes and main computers offline, disabling its attitude-control system. Officials said it will take several days to restore those systems, delaying the Progress launch until at least Sunday. The Progress is carrying a large supply of propellant that will be used in early March to lower the station's orbit, with reentry over the Pacific Ocean scheduled for March 6. What effect, if any, the launch delay will have on that schedule is unknown.
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