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Space Science

Baikonur Cosmodrome Roof Collapses 22

mrbrown1602 writes: "The roof of the 260-foot-tall Baikonur Cosmodrome collapsed today in Almaty, Kazakhstan. The hangar, used to store the Buran space shuttle (Russia's abandoned shuttle program), was built in the 1960s and used for the Soviet moon program. Could this delay the Buran auction? More can be found at Yahoo!."
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Baikonur Cosmodrome Roof Collapses

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  • baikonur (Score:2, Insightful)

    Baikonur [] looks like an enormous complex. Which of the dozens of buildings was it?
  • Could this delay the Buran auction?

    No, Timothy, it just killed eight people. I imagine most of them didn't read slashdot, so it's easy to understand why you don't give a fuck.
  • Ouch. I would be curious to see a detailed structual analysis. IF anyone has ever been to Moffet Field in California, those are big, similar hangars for blimps though. What caused the collapse specifically? I am curious
  • 1) I wasn't aware that any Russian shuttle, let alone Buran itself was being auctioned - just did a search on /. and no sight of an article about it, except the one from mid last year when they auctioned a scaled static tester. 2) The Yahoo article says a shuttle of the type was in the hanger at the time of the incident, but doesn't say if it was Buran or not, I had a feeling Buran was in a covered but not enclosed storage. 3) People died in this, that's a little more important than any shuttle.
    • by PD ( 9577 )
      Your search didn't turn up this? []

      I also thought that Buran was a name like Soyuz or Apollo - applied to all ships of the class. That's different that our shuttles, which have unique names.
      • Your search didn't turn up this? []
        from the article body....
        This is a Bor-5 VKK (Spacecraft) and was used to test the aerodynamic characteristics of high altitude and extreme speed and heat on a space vehicle. It is an exact 1/8 scale model of the Russian "Buran" space shuttle.

        It wasn't an auction of Buran, or any of the other shuttles, but of a test shuttle, not only not space capable but also 1/8th the size.

        I also thought that Buran was a name like Soyuz or Apollo - applied to all ships of the class. That's different that our shuttles, which have unique names.

        No. Buran is the name of the first shuttle that was completed and space-flight tested (it did an unmanned orbit and return - quite a feat, something the US shuttles have never done).

        I believe number two, which was almost completed was called Pitchka, meaning "Little Bird", the remaining ones were not officially named (they were only partially completed).

        • by PD ( 9577 )
          But, the third one is consistently referred to as "the third Buran".
        • Re:Erm (Score:3, Informative)

          by darkwhite ( 139802 )
          No. Buran is the name of the first shuttle that was completed and space-flight tested

          No. Buran was the name of the entire shuttle program (Buran-Energiya). The first orbiter was named Buran, too. (The Buran part of the program was kinda nameless while in development, and then they named it Baikal, but renamed it Buran at the last minute.) If it would ever come to multiple craft, I speculate they would just call them Buran-1, 2, and so on. They didn't have a history of naming units in a series with their own names.
    • And there was an article on Slashdot about it too... 0&mode=thread []
  • If I remember correctly, Bike was where Yuri Gagarin lifted off to do the first human orbit in space. Kinda sad to see how run down the place has become...must be rather depressing working there these days.
  • > It was unlikely any of the workers could have survived the fall
    > Russia would not allow Kazakh rescuers to approach the building
    > There was no information about the condition of the eight workers, he said
    > A special Russian rescue team left Moscow for Baikonur [...]
    > The plane was to arrive three hours later, or 13 hours after the accident took place.

    They don't know what happend to the construction crew. If someone was lucky enough to survive the accident and is lying badly injured in the rubble now he has to wait for 13 hours because of Russian politics.

    Reminds me of the Kursk disaster..
    • The walls of the building are stabalised by the roof, without the roof, the walls can collapse at any time. With an eighty metre fall onto a hard surface and amongst hard debris, survival was unlikely. With such a low probability of survival, it was decided not to allow rescue workers to risk their own lives and to wait for specialist equipment.

"We Americans, we're a simple people... but piss us off, and we'll bomb your cities." -- Robin Williams, _Good Morning Vietnam_