Space station docking attempt aborted

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The Russian resupply vehicle carrying food, fuel and new crew members failed to dock with the International Space Station on 2 July after a loss of communications between radio beacons.

The first docking attempt was scheduled for 16:58 GMT. The telemetry failure happened about 28min before. Another attempt is being considered for the next 48h, but data is still being analysed, says NASA.

The incident was not a matter of losing control, only a loss of contact, NASA says.

"It never posed any danger to the space station or the astronauts," NASA says. "The flight trajectory prevents them from colliding." The cargo vehicle, Progress 38, was about 2km (1.2 miles) away from the ISS at the time the docking was aborted, the agency adds.

A loss of telemetry has not occurred in recent history, although a manual dock was performed on the last mission to the ISS. Another manual dock would be performed if the automated manoeuvre cannot be completed in the next few days, NASA says.