Boeing’s Starliner spacecraft safely touches down in New Mexico
Boeing’s Starliner passenger spacecraft has efficiently returned to Earth. At 5:49 pm CDT, the uncrewed capsule landed on the US Army’s White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico on the finish of a six-day mission to the International Space Station (ISS).
Today’s parachute touchdown marks third time fortunate for the Starliner program, which has been marked by delays, tools malfunctions, and software glitches which have resulted in an emergency touchdown and an aborted launch. Because these issues might have affected the craft at each step of its take a look at flight, three was an air of suspense proper as much as landing in the New Mexico desert.
Part of certification earlier than it may start ferrying crews from American soil to the ISS, Orbital Flight Test-2 (OFT-2) lifted off from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida atop a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket at 6:55 pm EDT on May 19, 2022. A day later, the CST-100 Starliner autonomously rendezvoused and docked with the space lab and the station crew opened the hatch.
According to Boeing, the Starliner flight not solely demonstrated the power of the company to hold out a whole mission from launch to recovery, but in addition examined the spacecraft’s avionics system, docking system, communications and telemetry programs, environmental management programs, photo voltaic arrays, electrical energy programs, and propulsion programs. The capsule autonomously maintained its position earlier than docking and responded to instructions from the station. In addition, it confirmed the power to cost its batteries utilizing its photo voltaic panels, switch digital information, and set up joint air flow with the ISS.
The subsequent flight is scheduled to hold a crew.
“We have had an excellent flight test of a complex system that we expected to learn from along the way and we have,” said Mark Nappi, vice president and program manager, Boeing Commercial Crew Program. “Thank you to the NASA and Boeing teammates who have put so much of themselves into Starliner.
“With the completion of OFT-2, we’ll incorporate classes realized and proceed working to organize for the crewed flight take a look at and NASA certification.”
The video below replays the live coverage of Starliner’s return.