Boeing Starliner

Boeing Starliner

The Boeing Starliner: A Spacecraft for Crew Transport

The Boeing Starliner: A Spacecraft for Crew Transport

The Boeing Starliner (or CST-100) is a class of partially reusable spacecraft designed to transport crew to the International Space Station (ISS) and other low-Earth-orbit destinations. It is manufactured by Boeing, with the Commercial Crew Program (CCP) of NASA as the anchor customer. The spacecraft consists of a reusable crew capsule and an expendable service module.

Spacecraft Characteristics

The spacecraft consists of a reusable capsule and an expendable service module and is designed for missions to low Earth orbit. The capsule accommodates seven passengers, or a mix of crew and cargo. For NASA missions to the ISS, it will carry four passengers and a small amount of cargo. The Starliner capsule uses a weldless, spun-formed structure and is reusable up to 10 times with a six-month turnaround time. Boeing plans to alternate between two reusable crew modules for all planned Starliner missions. Each flight uses a new service module, which provides propulsion and power-generation capacity for the spacecraft. Starliner features wireless Internet and tablet technology for crew interfaces.

History

Starliner was unveiled in 2010 as the CST-100, as Boeing's first commercially developed space capsule. The company stated that the capsule would draw upon Boeing's experience with NASA's Apollo, Space Shuttle, and ISS programs as well as the Orbital Express project sponsored by the Department of Defense. In September 2014, NASA chose Boeing (Starliner) and SpaceX (Crew Dragon) as the two companies to be funded to develop systems to transport U.S. government crews to and from the International Space Station. After a lengthy development process with multiple delays, Boeing flew the Orbital Flight Test 2 on May 19, 2022. The Crewed Flight Test was tentatively scheduled for May 6, 2024.

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