Controllers have had no luck communicating with Russia's Phobos/Grunt Mars Probe. The errant spacecraft is still trapped in it's Low Earth Orbit after it's rocket booster fail to fire sending the probe to the Red Planet. Roscosmos the Russian Space Agency has been playing it pretty close to the vest, so precious little news has been forthcoming.
Unofficially, the Ex-Commandant of the Russian Ballistic Missile Early Warning Radar System believes that the Alaska based, high powered research radar system, HAARP caused the probe to misfire. Mars Daily has the story.
Officially, Russian President Dmitry Medevedev sounded like he was channeling Joseph Stalin when he called for the punishment for those responsible for the recent spate of rocket crashes and space blunders. Medevedev is up for reelection in early December. SpaceflightNow has the full story.
The ESA is modifying their 15 meter Maspalomas dish antenna on the Canary Islands to have a better shot at talking to Phobos/Grunt. Missing in action are NASA's radio telescope arrays. It turns out that the Chinese satellite hitching a ride to Mars aboard Phobos/Grunt presents a roadblock to NASA helping out. US policy won't let NASA help China's space program.
Finally, UniverseToday weighs in on the Human Cost of Russia's Spaceflight Troubles
I was scanning Twitter this morning
when I saw @CorduroyPlanet mentioned in a tweet
by @LincolnHwyAssoc saying:
How cool is that? Dare I say...it made my heart twitter a little...
Not exactly skunked...for it to count you must first go fishing and catch no keepers. SturgeUrge and I had planned to hit Tomales Bay one more time Thursday, but the next under-performing cold front will usher in high winds, Small Craft Warnings and Gale Warnings from Wednesday afternoon through Friday. Officially we've Scratched the trip. Dang, I wanted to have another 3-4 day Dungeness Crabfest!