Sea Launch confirms that it is not the source of internet video footage of the launch 'anomaly' that destroyed a communications satellite late last month when the Russian/Ukranian booster rocket exploded into a fireball.

The Boeing-led satellite launch provider Sea Launch says damage to the floating platform it used for the failed launch appears limited despite the converted oil rig being enveloped by the fireball . The Zenit-3SL booster exploded on lift-off on 30 January with the loss of New Skies Satellites’ Boeing-built NSS-8 communications satellite.

The platform remains in mid-Pacific while assessment of its structural integrity and seaworthiness continues.

Someone has posted a video clip of the explosion using the Sea Launch logo onto internet file sharing sites including (below). However, Sea Launch says the launch was being broadcast via its website, but cut the feed after the explosion. The youtube clip is likely to have come from a viewer of the broadcast who was recording. The camera was recorded on a camera on a command ship 4nm (6km) away to where crew had transferred before the launch.

The explosion followed 20 consecutive successful flights for Sea Launch. The only failure occurred on the Zenit-3SL’s third flight, in March 2000, when a software flaw caused the second stage to malfunction. A failure review oversight broad has been established to find the cause of the accident.

The explosion could delay the Sea Launch flight, scheduled for the second quarter carrying the Thuraya-3 satellite and one of five more launches planned for this year. Investigation of the accident could also delay the first Land Launch flight of the Zenit-3SLB booster, planned for the second half of the year from Baikonur in Kazakhstan.