04 August 2010

luck, the final frontier

The rollout of the Soyuz rocket takes place 48 hours before launch, as the rocket is carried to the pad by train. The crew are forbidden to attend this rollout as their presence here would bring bad luck; instead, they must have a haircut on this day.

[...]of the 483 people who have been launched into space as of March 2008, 18 have died during the mission. This mortality rate of 3.74% makes it one of the most dangerous professions one could follow: compare with a 0.39% mortality rate among the US military in Iraq 2003–2006 and 2.18% in Vietnam in 1966–1972.


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