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Siberia: Satellite Fragments Land on Cosmonaut Street

Fragments of a Russian satellite that failed to launch properly have landed on Cosmonaut Street in a Siberian village.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 12/25/2011, 6:15 AM

Fragments of a Russian satellite that failed to launch properly have landed in a remote Siberian village, in a street named after cosmonauts.

The BBC reported on Saturday that parts of the Meridian communications satellite, which failed to reach orbit on Friday, crashed into the Novosibirsk region of central Siberia and were found in the Ordynsk district around 100km (60 miles) south of the regional capital, Novosibirsk.

The parts landed on a street named Cosmonaut Street in the village of Vagaitsevo. The street is named after heroic Soviet spacemen.

They landed on a house in the village, and the home owner, Andrei Krivoruchenko, told Russian state television that he heard a huge noise and a crash as the satellite hit the roof.

"I climbed up onto the roof and could not work out what had happened,” he said. “Then I saw a huge hole in the roof and the metal object.”

The head of the Ordynsk district, Pavel Ivarovksy, told Russia's Interfax news agency that the damage was being examined by specialists and that the home's owner would be compensated.

The BBC noted that the loss of the Meridian satellite ends a disastrous year for Russian space activity. In the past 12 months, the Russians lost three navigation satellites, an advanced military satellite, a telecommunications satellite, a probe for Mars and as an unmanned Progress supply ship.

Earlier this month, Russia also failed to launch a Soyuz rocket. It will try again on December 26.