The Jeuns

‘Upcoming Launch of Boeing Starliner: What to Expect’

May 4, 2024 | by The Jeuns

NASA is gearing up for its first Boeing Starliner Crew Flight Test set to launch on Monday night. The scheduled liftoff is at 10:34 pm EDT from Cape Canaveral, Fla., aboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. Coverage of the event will start at 6:30 pm EDT and will be live-streamed across NASA’s platforms.

The Starliner craft will be carrying NASA astronauts Barry “Butch” Wilmore and Sunita (Suni) Williams, who will be heading to the International Space Station (ISS). The planned docking at the ISS is set for 12:48 am. NASA’s website will provide a live stream of the docking, hatch opening, and welcome remarks from the astronauts. For those in proximity to Florida’s Space Coast, there are various locations where the launch can be witnessed in person.

NASA Administrator Bill Nelson expressed excitement about the upcoming mission, calling it a significant milestone in space exploration. The historic day is expected to mark a new era in the space industry.

The Starliner launch forms part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, which aims to utilize American technology in partnership with private entities to send astronauts into space. The Boeing CST-100 Starliner capsule boasts a diameter of 15 feet, manual or automatic steering capabilities, and can accommodate up to four astronauts. A successful mission outcome will lead to the certification of Starliner for future ISS missions.

Following the ISS stay, Wilmore and Williams will return to Earth using parachutes and airbag-assisted landing technology. Wilmore, with two previous space flights and 178 days in space, is a seasoned astronaut. Williams, selected as a NASA astronaut in 1998, has completed two space missions accumulating 322 days in space.

The Starliner mission is poised to validate the transportation system, orbital functions, and crewed return capabilities. Boeing’s Starliner capsules are designed for reusability up to 10 times and include features like wireless internet.

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