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Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Starliner launch delayed – SpaceNews

The first crewed flight of Boeing’s CST-100 Starliner was delayed due to a last-minute ground computer issue. The launch was scrubbed just minutes before liftoff, pushing the mission back by at least four days. United Launch Alliance CEO Tory Bruno explained that a slower launch sequencer triggered an automatic hold, causing the delay. Technicians are currently working to resolve the problem, with a potential launch attempt on June 5 or 6.

Despite this setback, minor issues such as valve problems and fan malfunctions were also addressed during the countdown. The helium leak that had been a concern during a previous launch attempt was not an issue this time. NASA, Boeing, and ULA are working together to ensure a successful launch.

The delay beyond June 6 could lead to further complications, as ULA would need time to replace batteries in the rocket. NASA officials are aiming to complete the certification of Starliner by November or December to stay on track for the first operational mission in early 2025. The success of the Crew Flight Test mission is crucial for the certification process, as any in-flight anomalies will need to be addressed.

Overall, while the delay was disappointing, the teams involved remain professional and focused on achieving a successful launch. The importance of completing the certification process and resolving any issues during the CFT mission is crucial for the future of the Starliner program. Stay tuned for updates on the next launch attempt as the teams work to ensure a smooth and successful mission.

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