The Boeing Company is an American aerospace firm that makes rockets, airplanes, satellites, missiles and different high-tech merchandise. Since 2011, they’ve been concerned in NASA’s Commercial Crew Program (CCP) to offer a brand new automobile that may ferry astronauts into space.
Boeing was based in 1916 by William Edward Boeing in Seattle, Washington, based on an informational video on the corporate’s web site. Boeing, who had made a fortune promoting lumber, joined with engineer George Conrad Westervelt to construct a brand new kind of seaplane referred to as the Boeing Model 1.
From planes to rockets
Over the years, the corporate grew and produced airplanes for each army and business purposes. During the Nineteen Sixties Apollo program, Boeing labored with McDonnell Douglas and North American Aviation to construct NASA’s Saturn V rocket that took astronauts to the moon, according to the company.
Boeing was additionally concerned within the Space Shuttle program. The firm famously manufactured a modified Boeing 747 that the orbiting shuttle automobile would piggyback atop throughout exams and journey, according to Boeing.
In 2006, Boeing created a three way partnership with the personal spaceflight firm Lockheed Martin referred to as United Launch Alliance (ULA) to offer rockets for each NASA and the U.S. Department of Defense. ULA has among the largest launch automobiles round, which ferry provides to the International Space Station (ISS) and are additionally used to propel probes to different planets within the solar system.
As the Space Shuttle program wound down in 2011, NASA was in search of alternate options that would carry its crews into space. That yr, the company awarded four private companies — Blue Origin, Sierra Nevada, SpaceX and Boeing — contracts to stimulate the event of recent automobiles able to travelling to the ISS, with Boeing receiving the highest funding on the time with $92.3 million.
Boeing had already been engaged on its Crew Space Transportation-100 (CST-100) spacecraft, a capsule that would fly on varied rocket boosters together with SpaceX and ULA’s. The award allowed the corporate to proceed to develop and mature the automobile.
In 2014, NASA chosen each SpaceX and Boeing as companions in its Commercial Crew Program. SpaceX has used its Crew Dragon spacecraft to ferry astronauts, whereas Boeing is continuous to work on its automobile, now referred to as the CST-100 Starliner.
Starliner is a gumdrop-shaped capsule measuring 14.8 ft (4.5 meters) throughout at its widest level. It is designed to hold as much as seven passengers, or a mixture of cargo and crew, to low Earth orbit, according to Boeing. As of May 2020, NASA has given Boeing about $4.8 billion to develop Starliner.
According to a report from the U.S. Office of the Inspector General, NASA pays round $90 million per seat for every crewmember on Starliner, in comparison with simply $55 million per seat for Dragon, although Boeing has stated that they “strongly disagree” with the report’s conclusions relating to pricing.
Boeing started its much-anticipated testing of Starliner in space in 2019, throughout a mission that was imagined to final eight days and have an automatic rendezvous with the ISS. An error with Starliner’s onboard timing system prevented this plan from being enacted, and the capsule ended up circling the Earth by itself for 48 hours after which touchdown at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.