N1Though the race to the moon has already been lost, the Soviet space program continues to refine its giant N1 rocket, conducting extensive modifications to nearly all of its systems. The third N1 to lift off almost immediately loses directional control, forcing ground controllers to signal it to self-destruct less than a mile off the ground. Its cargo is an unmanned Soyuz/Korabl combo – the Soviet answer to the Apollo command/service module and landing module – though this time there is no launch escape system, so the vehicle is destroyed along with its booster.