Boeing’s Starliner spacecraft docked for the first time at the International Space Station on Friday (Saturday morning in Portugal). As it was said, this unmanned mission was an important test for the company, which aspires to compete with Elon Musk’s SpaceX. So, this Saturday morning, just over 25 hours after launch, the capsule arrived at the International Space Station (ISS).
Starline will remain attached to the International Space Station for four or five days. Then, as planned, the capsule will return to Earth and land in New Mexico.
Boeing's Starliner has finally arrived at the International Space Station
Boeing Starliner spacecraft It has been successfully accessed and recieved on the International Space Station, completing an important step in a crucial test flight that determines whether it is ready for manned missions. Unmanned spacecraft launched above Atlas V missile from the United Launch Alliance From Cape Canaveral and traveled more than 25 hours to reach the orbiting laboratory.
Starliner has made its first attempt to reach the International Space Station In December 2019However, it failed to achieve its goal due to a software problem that prevented the launch of the spacecraft's thrusters. In August last year, Boeing was forced to cancel launch plans due to a problem with the spacecraft's valves, which prevented the company from planning another launch for about a year.
Docking with the International Space Station, which was scheduled for 00:10 (mainland Portugal time, It's over at 1:28. This is because, shortly before 22:50 (Friday), when the spacecraft was within 180 meters of the International Space Station, observers evaluated the observation and performance data of the capsule and believed that it would be in a disadvantageous position. Then it was necessary to carry out a retreat maneuver.
After reaching a distance of 180 meters from @space stationAnd # Star Performed an automatic retreat to 200 metres. The capsule shown has the ability to be retracted from the station in a controlled and timely manner and kept at the expected location.
Boeing Space May 20 2022
According to Boeing, this maneuver came just in time to demonstrate the capsule's maneuverability control.
At 00:08, this Saturday, Boeing reported that the capsule 10 meters from the orbital complex, and that the team will hold a meeting "to make sure both spacecraft are ready for the final approach."
During this approach, the controllers reported a "little problem" with the docking system, which delayed the process even more. According to NASA, it was necessary to remove and reset the Starliner coupling ring to understand the problem.
be seen # Star Successfully, independently meet and dock with @space station during # OFT2. Through the joint work of Tweet embed and Starliner, the spacecraft connected to the international docking adapter built by Boeing at 7:28 p.m. PT. pic.twitter.com/GHnz59zHXa
Boeing Space May 21 2022
Starliner also had issues at launch
Boeing's Starliner capsule was launched Thursday night atop a United Launch Alliance (ULA) Atlas V rocket from Launch Pad-41, a platform at US Power Station in Cape Canaveral, Florida.
The Starliner separated from the rocket's upper stage about 15 minutes after launch. One minute later, the capsule began the orbital insertion process.
during this moment, Two Starliner thrusters didn't release as expected. The first failed after only a second. Your backup ran immediately, but also failed after 25 seconds. This activated a third backup of the booster package, and the capsule was able to complete critical combustion without incident.
As introduced by the company at the time, the Boeing spacecraft is equipped with four sets of thrusters in its aft section, referred to in the industrial designation as "kennels." Each of these kits contains three motors from Orbital maneuvering and posture control (OMAC), which is used to perform combustion in important maneuvers such as reaching orbital insertions.
The two OMAC payers that didn't work, and the third that went in for compensation, were the same Starliner in the back kennelAccording to Boeing representatives.
As noted, the Starliner spacecraft will remain attached to the International Space Station for the next five days before making its return flight, which will see it land in the New Mexico desert. If the spacecraft succeeds in returning to Earth, Boeing could send astronauts into orbit as early as this fall.
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