For the second time this year, the International Station had gone into an accidental tilting while a planned pre-departure test was being conducted at around 5:02 a.m. EDT, and the Russian thrusters, according to reports, were responsible for the occurrence.

Fox News report said the said thrusters continued to fire beyond the end of the test, leading to what space reports described as a "loss of attitude control" and, eventually, the tilting.

According to NASA, within half an hour, flight controllers could regain attitude control of ISS, which is currently in a stable configuration.

It added that the crew was awake at the occurrence and did not go through any danger. The Soyuz MS-18 was scheduled to bring a small crew back to Earth early Sunday morning.

ALSO READ: Russia's Nauka Module Unexpectedly Tilted ISS: NASA Assures No One Was Endangered, Space Station Regained Its Control

Science Times - International Space Station Tilts Again; NASA, Roscosmos Open Joint Investigation Into Recurrence of the Occurrence
(Photo: NASA on Wikimedia Commons)
Soyuz MS-18 and Nauka above Europe at nigh

Potentially Ran Out of Propellant report said the lab deviated briefly from its standard orientation "by 57 degrees." More so, Timothy Creamer, NASA flight coordinator, explained, the engines switched off on their own, perhaps, because of the engines that ran out of propellant.

The reason for the deviant engine activity stays unidentified. In connection to this space occurrence, NASA and Roscosmos, the federal space agency of Russia, have initiated a joint investigation into the incident.

It remains unclear why the thrusters topped firing, although the handlers of the station have some ideas. Creamer said Moscow is currently checking into it and performing its own data analysis.

The small group scheduled to fly home on Sunday comprised Oleg Novitskiy, a cosmonaut; Klim Shipenko, a film director; and Yulia Presild, an actor. As specified in this report, the crew's departure will carry on as planned.

This Year's 1st Tilting

In late July, the space station was accidentally spun when the thrusters of Russia's newly arrived Nauka module conducted some unplanned firing.

The occurrence was even more dangerous as it rotated the orbiting lab by approximately 540 degrees. Russian officials were able to trace specifically the July 29 event to a software malfunction.

In a statement, Roscosmos officials said because of a short-term software; direct facilitation was mistakenly applied to turn on the engines of the module for withdrawal, which resulted in some alteration of the orientation of the complex, in general.

Despite what happened, the Soyuz MS-18 stays on track to return to this planet this year. The spacecraft was set to undock from the station on October 16 around 5:14 pm EDT and was set to touch down on Kazakhstan's steppes at roughly 3.5 hours.

Nauka Docking Incident

In an earlier Science Times report, Zebulon Scoville, NASA flight director leading mission control in Houston during the incident, took over the docking from Gregory Whitney, also a flight director at NASA, who then had a meeting to attend

The former said the space station reached a 0.056 rotation rate maximum per second, which was inadequate for the crew to feel such a tilt.

Representatives from NASA then confirmed that the representation of Scoville of the exact numbers that the ISS tilted was precise.

However, they reiterated that it was very slow to be noticed by astronauts aboard the space station and that all other station systems continued operating during the docking incident.

Furthermore, they explained that the initial 45-degree tilt they reported was provided during the initial minutes following the occurrence of the event, although it was later updated after analysis of the actual occurrence.

Related information about the recurrence is shown on Tony Technology's YouTube video below:


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