MOSCOW – An unmanned Russian cargo ship has lifted off successfully on a supply mission to the International Space Station.
A Soyuz booster rocket carrying the Progress MS-05 spacecraft blasted off as scheduled at 11:58 a.m. (0558 GMT) Wednesday from the Russian-leased Baikonur launch complex in Kazakhstan.
The mission follows the Dec. 1 botched launch of the previous Progress ship, which crashed less than 7 minutes after liftoff, spraying fiery debris over a sparsely populated area in southern Siberia near the border with Mongolia.
An official Russian investigation has concluded that the failed launch was caused by a manufacturing flaw in the Soyuz booster's third-stage engine.
Prior to Wednesday's launch, space officials ran rigorous checks of the engines already built and conducted a comprehensive scrutiny of manufacturing facilities.