First flight of Boeing Starliner with crew is postponed again

The launch of the Starliner with two astronauts on board was postponed again. Engineers plan to solve technical problems with the spacecraft by May 25. 

Starliner spacecraft. Source: Wikipedia

Helium leak in the service module

The first manned launch of the Boeing Starliner spacecraft to the International Space Station had been postponed again due to a technical problem, NASA announced on Friday. 

The launch from the Florida spaceport was scheduled for Tuesday, but NASA announced that it had been postponed to May 25 to allow teams to further assess the helium leak associated with the service module, which was located on top of the rocket.

Earlier this month, the launch of the Starliner was postponed a few hours before takeoff, when the astronauts were already strapped in, due to a separate technical problem. “The additional time allows teams to further assess the helium leak,” NASA said on its website.

Second delay of the Starliner flight

Two astronauts, Butch Wilmore and Sunita Williams, meanwhile remain in Houston, Texas, until the mission is ready. This delay of the long-awaited mission, which has been delayed for several years, comes at a difficult time for Boeing, as safety issues worry the commercial division of the aerospace titan with a century-old history.

NASA is relying on Starliner’s success to achieve its goal of certifying a second commercial vehicle to carry crews to the International Space Station. This will allow the American Space Agency to feel more free in planning its missions to the ISS. 

Elon Musk’s SpaceX already achieved this in 2020 with its Dragon capsule, putting the end to almost a decade of dependence on Russian rockets after the completion of the Space Shuttle program. It is expected that Starliner will not replace it, but only complement it.

According to

Follow us on Twitter to get the most interesting space news in time