CAPE CANAVERAL,. Fla. – NASA and Boeing are scheduled to hold a teleconference Tuesday to discuss the upcoming test flight of the Starliner space capsule, the competitor to SpaceX’s Crew Dragon.
The media teleconference to discuss the Orbital Flight Test 2 is set for noon and will be streamed in the media player at the top of this story when it happens.
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The mission is set for launch on Thursday, May 19, from Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.
The Starliner capsule will be uncrewed for this test flight and will launch atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket.
The capsule is set to travel to the International Space Station and dock before a return to Earth, landing in one of five designated landing zones in the western part of the U.S.
If the test flight is successful, NASA and Boeing will then plan a Crew Flight Test, which will be Starliner’s first mission with astronauts on board.
This will be Starliner’s second test flight, after a malfunction caused the space capsule to miss a key maneuver during its first flight in 2019, preventing it from reaching the I.S.S. and forcing it to land in the desert.
Boeing had hoped for a second test flight in 2021, but it was delayed when moisture found its way into the capsule’s service module ahead of a planned launch in August, which combined with oxidizer to make corrosion-causing nitric acid. The process led to 13 of 24 valves in the service module becoming “stuck” and ultimately scrubbed the liftoff atop an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station.
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