Boeing’s astronaut taxi has cleared an enormous hurdle on the street to its July 30 launch to the International Space Station.
The CST-100 Starliner capsule has handed its flight readiness assessment (FRR) for the upcoming liftoff, which can kick off the uncrewed Orbital Flight Test 2 (OFT-2) mission to the station, NASA and Boeing representatives introduced Thursday (July 22).
“After reviewing the teams’ data and the readiness of all the parties, everybody said ‘go’ for the launch today and moving out for the mission,” Kathy Lueders, affiliate administrator of NASA’s Human Exploration and Operations Mission Directorate, mentioned throughout a name with reporters Thursday.
Boeing developed Starliner with funding from NASA’s industrial crew program, which was designed to assist get American non-public spacecraft able to fill the crew-carrying footwear of the now-retired space shuttle fleet.
In 2014, this system picked Boeing and SpaceX for this job. SpaceX has already launched three crewed missions to the space station for NASA, the final two of which have been absolutely operational, contracted flights. SpaceX’s first astronaut mission, which launched in May 2020, was an indication flight.
Starliner will not be but prepared to hold astronauts, nonetheless; it first wants to indicate that it may possibly get to and from the orbiting lab safely and easily. Boeing already took one crack at this important uncrewed mission, launching OFT-1 in December 2019.
But Starliner suffered a number of critical points throughout the flight and failed to meet up with the station as planned. Two OFT-1 opinions that NASA performed final 12 months discovered a total of 80 corrective actions that Boeing wanted to take earlier than Starliner might fly once more.
The aerospace big has addressed all of these considerations, given the outcomes of the FRR, which came about in the present day at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center (KSC) in Florida.
During the FRR, Boeing and NASA groups “gathered to hear presentations from key mission managers as part of an in-depth assessment on the readiness of flight for Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner spacecraft and systems, mission operations, support functions and readiness of the space station program to support Starliner’s mission to the microgravity laboratory,” NASA officers wrote in an update today.
OFT-2 is scheduled to launch from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, which is subsequent door to KSC. Starliner will elevate off atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket at 2:53 p.m. EDT (1853 GMT) on July 30, meet up with the space station, and are available again to Earth six days later, if all goes in accordance with plan.
Mike Wall is the creator of “Out There” (Grand Central Publishing, 2018; illustrated by Karl Tate), a ebook concerning the seek for alien life. Follow him on Twitter @michaeldwall. Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom or Facebook.