Boeing’s extended-awaited Starliner flight to the Intercontinental House Station is dealing with one delay after a further. The flight, formally regarded as NASA’s Boeing Orbital Flight Exam-2 (OFT-2) mission, is Boeing’s next orbital take a look at of the reusable space car or truck built for routinely transporting astronauts and payloads to the ISS.
Launch was at first scheduled on Friday at Cape Canaveral House Power Station in Florida, but acquired scrubbed at the last minute thanks to an incident on the ISS.
On Thursday, a newly connected space station module launched by Russia inadvertently commenced firing its thrusters, briefly pushing the house station into a spin prior to floor controllers bought it back below regulate. NASA required the total Friday to inspect the ISS to make positive that it’s all set for new missions.
Boeing’s Starliner start was hence postponed by four days—to make space for categorized military services operations at Cape Canaveral more than the weekend—to Tuesday afternoon.
On Tuesday early morning, Boeing explained the flight was postponed yet again due to “unexpected valve placement indications in the propulsion system.” Boeing reported it could attempt again on Wednesday, pending weather conditions conditions at Cape Canaveral.
Starliner is a competing task of SpaceX’s Crew Dragon under NASA’s Business Crew Program. Irrespective of having obtained almost two times as a lot in NASA funding, Boeing’s spacecraft enhancement considerably lags at the rear of that of SpaceX.
Crew Dragon began operational missions in November 2020. Considering that then, it has sent 8 astronauts to the ISS. Later this month, 4 astronauts currently working on the room station are expected to return to Earth in a Dragon spacecraft released in April.
Boeing’s last orbital examination took spot in December 2019. An uncrewed Starliner failed to access the space station and returned to Earth in a shortened flight. It took Boeing additional than a calendar year to review what went incorrect, deal with program glitches and address other complex concerns raised by NASA to get Starlink prepared to fly once more.
While it is technically a test flight, the OFT-2 mission will have additional than 400 lbs . of cargo and crew supplies to the ISS. The Starliner capsule will keep docked at the place station for about a week before flying again to Earth.