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Last-minute snag halts Boeing Starliner launch NASA estimates 24-hour turnaround time

Boeing's Starliner launch delayed due to unknown issue, astronauts safe. NASA could rely on Boeing for future missions.

NASA's reliance on Boeing for routine trips to the International Space Station faces another delay as the launch of the Starliner spacecraft was scrubbed due to an unknown issue. The ground launch sequencer triggered an automatic hold just minutes before liftoff, postponing the mission by a day.

Scheduled to carry NASA astronauts Butch Wilmore and Sunita Williams to the orbiting outpost, the Starliner spacecraft's launch from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida was met with unexpected setbacks. Despite the delay, the astronauts were safely removed from the spacecraft as preparations continued.

With limited service providers, NASA is eagerly awaiting the success of Boeing's mission to add another option for transporting astronauts to the International Space Station. Currently, NASA relies on SpaceX's Crew Dragon capsule and Russian Soyuz spacecraft for crew transportation.

The veteran astronauts, well-prepared for any emergency situations, will take control of the Starliner spacecraft if needed. Their extensive experience and expertise make them ideal candidates for the key test flight to the orbiting laboratory.

During their eight-day stay aboard the International Space Station, the astronauts will join the seven crew members already on board. Despite a recent helium leak detection on the spacecraft, NASA assured that it does not pose a threat to the mission.

Program manager Steve Stich emphasized the complexity of the issue, stating that the location of the leak makes it challenging to address safely. Despite the setbacks, NASA remains optimistic about the success of the mission and the potential for Boeing's Starliner spacecraft to become a reliable transportation option for future trips to the International Space Station.

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