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Boeing postpones crewed flight of Starliner spacecraft after new leak

There was a small helium leak in the Starliner capsule. As a result, Boeing decided to postpone the crewed launch of the spacecraft until the 21st.

The long-awaited crewed flight of Starliner spacecraft was postponed again. A Boeing announced on Tuesday (14) that the flight test will not take place before May 21 due to a helium leak in the capsule’s service module. Until then the mission was scheduled for Friday (17th).

Boeing e NASA they had planned to launch the Crew Flight Test (CFT) mission on May 6, but when there were two hours left before the Atlas V rocket left the earth, they had to change their plans. OR the reason was a valve which failed the upper stage of the rocket.

According to Boeing, the component has been replaced and is now behaving normally. The helium leak is related to a “flange on a single thruster of the reaction control system” in the Starliner’s service module.

These propellants don’t work with helium, but they need the compound to work properly. “NASA and Boeing are developing spacecraft test and operational solutions to address the issue,” the company added in a statement.

The Starliner spacecraft and Atlas V rocket that will be used in the launch (Image: Reproduction/NASA/Joel Kowsky)

Now, launch is scheduled for 5:43 pm Brasilia time from the Space Station facilities in Cape Canaveral, Florida. When the CFT launches, it will take astronauts Suni Williams and Butch Wilmore to the International Space Station (ISS).

This will be the third flight of the Starliner: the previous two were also unmanned missions sent to the ISS. If all goes well, Starliner will get certification to carry NASA astronauts to the orbiting laboratory, returning them safely.

Source: Starliner

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