NASA cancels Starliner’s first human test flight

Washington (dpa-AFX) – The launch of the crisis-hit space shuttle “Starliner”, scheduled for Tuesday night, was canceled just before its first unmanned test flight. The US space agency NASA said that the oxygen valve on the “Atlas V” rocket needs to be inspected. Two NASA astronauts, Barry Willmore and Suni Williams, leave the “Starliner” capsule and return to their crew quarters on the space shuttle at Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA. A new date for the test flight, which had been postponed several times earlier, was not initially announced.

Wilmore and Williams actually had plans to take off with “Starliner” on the first manned test flight to the International Space Station (ISS). They should arrive there on Wednesday and stay for a week. For the arrival of the “Starliner”, the “Crew Dragon” stationed there was transferred to another docking station on the ISS.

In May 2022, the “Starliner”, designed and built by the American aircraft manufacturer Boeing, completed a successful unmanned flight to the ISS for the first time and spent four days there – a critical test for the spacecraft. In the future, it will replace SpaceX’s “Crew Dragon” space capsule to transport astronauts to the ISS. However, due to several problems, the project is very much behind schedule./cah/DP/zb

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