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World News May 25, 2024

Boeing’s 1st astronaut flight set for June after review of small leak on new capsule

Boeing is aiming for its first astronaut launch with the Starliner capsule at the beginning of June, following recent issues. The launch, delayed due to a propulsion system leak detected after a failed attempt on May 6, is now targeted for June 1. The leak, likely caused by a defective rubber seal, is manageable in flight, and all other seals have been verified.

This upcoming mission will be Starliner’s third test flight but the first with astronauts aboard, following two previous uncrewed tests in 2019 and 2022. The delay was initially caused by a valve issue in the Atlas V rocket.

NASA and Boeing engineers have addressed additional concerns, including a design vulnerability in the propulsion system, and developed methods to ensure safe return in case of system failures. NASA and Boeing stress that safety remains the priority, and adjustments are ongoing to ensure the mission’s success.

Boeing’s Starliner, delayed by several years, aims to complement SpaceX in providing astronaut transport to the International Space Station, ensuring redundancy in NASA’s commercial crew program.

Source – CGTN

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