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Boeing Starliner launch scrubbed: First crewed mission to space station

NASA and Boeing delay ISS launch due to valve issue. Astronauts aboard Starliner capsule wait for new launch date announcement.

NASA and Boeing encountered a setback on Monday as they were forced to postpone the launch of the Starliner capsule to the International Space Station due to a last-minute issue with a valve on the spacecraft's rocket. The planned liftoff from Florida's Cape Canaveral Space Force Station with NASA astronauts Barry "Butch" Wilmore and Sunita Williams on board was called off just two hours before the scheduled time.

The launch was scrubbed after an anomaly was detected on an oxygen valve on the Atlas V rocket, which was supposed to carry the Starliner capsule into orbit. A new launch date has not been announced yet, leaving the mission controllers and crew members in limbo.

This crewed test flight is crucial for NASA to authorize Boeing to conduct routine flights to and from the space station. Safety is of utmost importance for both NASA and Boeing, especially for the spacecraft's first flight with humans on board.

Boeing has faced numerous setbacks and delays with its Starliner program, falling behind SpaceX in crewed missions to the space station. Both SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule and Boeing's Starliner craft were developed under NASA's Commercial Crew Program, which aims to support private companies in building new space vehicles for low-Earth orbit missions.

The Starliner's first uncrewed flight in 2019 was marred by software issues, and subsequent attempts were delayed due to fuel valve problems. It wasn't until 2022 that Boeing managed to successfully carry out an uncrewed flight to and from the space station.

Despite the setbacks, NASA and Boeing remain committed to the success of the Starliner program and ensuring the safety of all crew members on future missions. The collaboration between the two organizations continues as they work towards achieving their goals in space exploration.

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