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NASA and Boeing confirm Starliner won’t fly until first half of 2022 as valve investigation continues – TechCrunch

NASA and Boeing provided the latest information on the troubled Starliner capsule on Tuesday, confirming that the spacecraft will fly the fastest sometime in the first half of next year. The Starliner was crushed in August after an oxidant valve problem was discovered about four and a half hours before launch.

The launch was part of Starliner’s second test flight of an unmanned spacecraft called the Orbital Flight Test-2 (OFT-2). Since the problem was discovered, Boeing has been able to identify the root cause of why 13 of the 24 valves in the propulsion system remained closed during normal pre-mission activities. not.

Boeing’s space and launch chief engineer Michelle Parker said at a media briefing on Tuesday that the two valves would be removed from the spacecraft and sent to NASA’s NASA Marshall Space Flight Center where they would be disassembled for further investigation. Stated.

In 2014, NASA awarded Boeing and SpaceX contracts for six round-trip crew missions to the International Space Station under the Commercial Crew Program (CCP). NASA’s CCP Manager Steve Stitch signed a contract between the two companies at a media briefing, especially considering the possibility of extending the operational life of the ISS after 2024, and more flights to each company’s list. Said that there is a possibility to add. The final schedule allows each company to bring astronauts in and out of the station once a year.

NASA maintains “all confidence that Boeing will soon fly the crew,” Stitch said. “After resolving this issue, we will be able to use the two space transport systems that both Boeing and SpaceX fly as desired. […] There is no reason to believe that Boeing will not succeed. “

Even after Boeing returns the Starliner to the launch pad, Boeing’s CCP program manager John Volmer estimates that it will take about six months from the success of OFT-2 to a manned mission. He added that the cost of valve investigations and launch delays would be borne by Boeing, not NASA.

This is the second Starliner launch attempt following the OFT-1. Could not get into the target trajectory Launched in 2019 due to software issues. Another contractor selected under NASA’s CCP, SpaceX will fly three crew missions in the Crew Dragon Capsule and carry out the fourth on Halloween.

NASA and Boeing confirm Starliner won’t fly until first half of 2022 as valve investigation continues – TechCrunch Source link NASA and Boeing confirm Starliner won’t fly until first half of 2022 as valve investigation continues – TechCrunch

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