Blow to NASA ISS mission: what happened?

NASA has projected that the Starliner and Crew Dragon spaceships will conduct their first flights to the ISS in 2020.

Starliner will be staying at the worldwide space station for a week before its starts undocking and beginning its return to Earth on December 28. The launch is scheduled for February 5, 2020, from Space Launch Complex-41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida. This was a critical mission for NASA and Boeing, as the company sought to use this test flight to prove that its capsule was ready to launch humans into space next year. The result was the thrusters firing at the wrong time, leaving it in the wrong position and without enough propellant to complete its mission and return to Earth.

Expect some incredible images this morning from the Cape as the ULA test launch with the Starliner capsule will be just about 30 minutes before sunrise. "It landed exactly where it was supposed to", a NASA commentator said in a broadcast from the NASA mission control centre in Houston.

The flight test will provide valuable data about the end-to-end performance of the Atlas V rocket, Starliner spacecraft, and ground systems, as well as in-orbit, docking and landing operations.

Snow squall warning issued in 2 N.J. counties
Thursday looks mostly sunny & rather breezy from the southeast, then south-southeast at 15-25 miles per hour with highs 33-38. An arctic front is moving through New England on Wednesday , bringing gusty winds and the potential for snow squalls .

The Boeing Company's Starliner lifted off Friday morning atop an Atlas Five rocket. In the meantime, NASA and Boeing are determining the best way to boost the spacecraft into the preferred orbit to take it back to White Sands. But, as of an hour after launch, the mission team is working through an anomaly with the uncrewed CST-100 Starliner spacecraft. Early reviews from both NASA and Boeing-Starliner's builder-indicated that a clock malfunction prevented the engines from firing at the correct time.

Nasa administrator Jim Bridenstine said independent teams had been brought in to review the spacecraft's re-entry after it failed to reach the space station on Friday after a timing issue caused rockets to misfire. NASA officials deferred to Boeing for updates.

NASA's Commercial Crew Program was conceived nearly a decade ago following the retirement of the Space Shuttle.

If successful, Sunday's landing will mark the first time a United States orbital space capsule designed for humans landed on land.

  • Douglas Reid