The spaceship is seen stirring left to right in the video. The bulging shape of its fuel tanks and its outspread solar panels are easily discernable. The unsuccessful Russian Mars probe Photos-Grunt has been pictured moving diagonally the sky by the Paris-based amateur astronomer Thierry Legault. The engineer has posted the video and how he went about acquiring it on his Astrophotography website.
The propellants, unsymmetrical dimethylhydrazine and dinitrogen peroxide, are highly toxic but they will almost certainly be consumed in the fireball that engulfs Phobos-Grunt when it makes its death dive to Earth. The Russian space agency said on Friday that perhaps 20-30 pieces weighing no more than 200kg in total might survive the destructive dive and impact the face somewhere.