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Boeing’s first commercial crew capsule christened ‘Calypso’ – Spaceflight Now

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Boeing’s Starliner spacecraft, named “Calypso,” seen after touchdown Sunday at White Sands House Harbor, New Mexico. Credit score: NASA/Invoice Ingalls

Contemporary from its inaugural check flight in area, Boeing’s first reusable Starliner crew capsule has been named “Calypso” by NASA astronaut Suni Williams, who will command the identical car on its subsequent journey into orbit.

The Starliner spacecraft landed at 7:58 a.m. EST (5:58 a.m. MST; 1258 GMT) Sunday to finish an abbreviated two-day Orbital Flight Check.

The mission was lower brief after an on-board timing error prevented the spacecraft from performing a deliberate orbit insertion burn quickly after launch Friday. Mission controllers uplinked instructions for the Starliner to enter a secure, however unplanned orbit, leaving the capsule unable to achieve the Worldwide House Station as supposed.

Learn our earlier story for particulars on the timing error, and its implications for plans to fly astronauts on the subsequent Starliner mission.

Boeing has produced two reusable human-rated spaceships for flights to the area station beneath a $four.2 billion contract with NASA. The area company has signed the same $2.6 billion contract with SpaceX in 2014 for improvement of the Crew Dragon spacecraft, on which astronauts will fly new autos on every mission.

The Starliner car that landed Sunday in New Mexico, designated Spacecraft three, is slated to fly once more on Boeing’s second crewed mission. NASA has assigned astronauts Suni Williams and Josh Cassada that Starliner mission, the primary common crew rotation flight to the area station.

Williams and Cassada might be joined by two different crew members from NASA’s worldwide companions. Their mission will comply with the Crew Flight Check that can use Spacecraft 2, which is in last meeting at Boeing’s Starliner issue on the Kennedy House Heart in Florida.

Every of the space-rated Starliner autos is designed for 10 missions.

Spacecraft 1 was constructed for Boeing’s pad abort check and isn’t supposed to fly in area.

Boeing astronaut Chris Ferguson, a former NASA area shuttle commander, will launch on the Crew Flight Check to the area station with NASA astronauts Mike Fincke and Nicole Mann.

Ferguson, Fincke, Mann and Williams had been in New Mexico Sunday for the Starliner touchdown.

In an interview on NASA TV’s touchdown broadcast, Williams stated she has named the Starliner car that returned Sunday “Calypso” in an ode to the analysis vessel utilized by French explorer Jacques Cousteau.

“I like the ocean,” stated Williams, a retired U.S. Navy captain and a veteran of two earlier area station expeditions. “There’s a lot to find within the ocean, and there’s a lot to find in area. It simply appeared like a pure marriage.”

NASA astronaut Suni Williams. Credit score: NASA/Invoice Ingalls

Boeing owns the Starliner crew capsules, and a senior firm official stated Sunday he favored the identify Calypso.

“(It’s) laborious to withstand the attract of the commander of your first income service flight selecting her (spacecraft) identify,” stated Jim Chilton, vice chairman of Boeing’s area and launch division.

“Cool identify, by the way in which, on a private notice,” he added. “It evokes Jacques Cousteau and exploration.”

In Greek mythology, Calypso is the daughter of Atlas. On this system’s early missions, all Starliner spacecraft will raise off on prime of United Launch Alliance’s Atlas 5 rockets.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine additionally endorsed the identify selection.

“Calypso it’s!” Bridenstine tweeted Sunday.

Email the writer.

Comply with Stephen Clark on Twitter: @StephenClark1.

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