back to article Boeing's first-ever crewed mission in Starliner ISS spacecraft delayed to late July

Boeing's debut Starliner spacecraft launch carrying its first-ever crew of astronauts to the International Space Station is being postponed again, and is not expected to fly until 21 July at the earliest. A Boeing Starliner landing system gets tested for reliability back in 2020 in White Sands Space Harbor in New Mexico. Photo …

  1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    Boeing solution

    A software fix that simulates the instrument data from the parachute if it fails to open

  2. An_Old_Dog Silver badge

    Take Your Time, Boeing

    Better to delay a sentient-crewed spacecraft launch and get it right, than to rush it and get it wrong.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: Take Your Time, Boeing

      Agreed. I'm in two minds over this delay. Safety first, of course, and some sadness that it's being delayed as it's another option for keeping the ISS crewed and supplied. On the other hand, it's Boeing and these days, we expect problems and delays.

  3. Brian 3

    Does anyone else get the feeling like Boeing are playing regulatory catch-up after getting caught with no pants on with the shenanigans they've been pulling last decade or so? Like just shooting from the hip this whole time and now they're like oh fuck, documentation? Standards? They're going to check for that? Uhh.. yeah, we have that.. Hold on a sec!

    For so long we've been conditioned to think that only big massive companies can make stuff like aerospace successfully, but the last 20 years says strongly that they can't really do it. There's certainly no reasonable excuse to trust them to "self-certify" any more than you'd trust the guy at the street corner with a spray bottle and squeegee to "self-certify". The big company has so much to lose, yet they have nothing to lose by lying and cheating, because there's so much room to play it off. Worst case scenario they have a relative pittance of a fine - that will just get tacked on to a "cost plus" contract. Maybe they even have to set up some poor sap as a fall guy, but chances are they won't even need to go that far!

    1. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

      We do aerospace(amongst other stuff).

      As far as our rules go there is no such thing as self-certify

      I design/program whats needed, one of the other techs checks my stuff over.... it moves to production where whoever builds the production cell/machine up to do the job cannot inspect said finished part.

      Then we make sure any operators know to check stuff, and have a rule that anyone can check and stop the job if needed.

      It then gets 100% inspected by our QA manager and sent to the customer along with the paper trail.(and we keep a copy of that)

      It boggles the mind that a company like Boeing cannot replicate this sort of thing.... after all their business IS aerospace.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        But that is still self-certified.

        People have the idea that the regulator should know more about the design and is going over it correcting your homework as it were.

        Self-certified is really the only way to make an aircraft or medical device or etc. You come up with a list if things that could go wrong and you list how you mitigate the risk and how you will test the solution.

        Sometimes the regulator has lists of risks you must consider. But ultimately they have to trust that the manufacturer did what they said they would. That's what the 737max didn't

      2. cookieMonster Silver badge

        “ after all their business IS aerospace”, it was at one time, now it’s “Sales and Shareholder dividends”

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Downfall: The Case Against Boeing

          If you have Netflix, you should really watch "Downfall: The Case Against Boeing"

      3. Firstborn
        Black Helicopters

        It boggles the mind

        In the mid-'90's when Boeing decided to sell its soul to Wall Street and the bean counters instead of the engineers started making the decisions about design and manufacturing, the company went into an accelerated stall (aviation term, look it up) and the results have been disastrous. I was there at the start of the culture shift and was able to separate myself when I didn't like the smell coming from the boardroom.

        But, hey, what's a few hundred lives lost in avoidable 737-MAX mishaps when the stock price is going up?

        Boeing's board needs a Valentine's Day Massacre. Problem is, the replacements will only be worse.

    2. Nonymous Crowd Nerd

      Boeing to be caught with no pants.. Again.

      I think it's actually not quite the same this time.. With the foul up over the 737 MAX still in people's memory, I think they've realised that this time..

      It's existential.

      They would not be able to shrug off these two lives in the blinding glare of worldwide live publicity as they have all the others.

      If this rocket fails Boeing cannot survive in their current form. In particular I think that the whole would be split and anything identifiable as the "space division" would be folded. This in turn would shrink the whole company and leave them very much less able to fund the CEO merrigoround and disguise cross-subsidies.

      With this in mind, the rocket may never launch.

      They will be employing Chat-GPT plus a public relations army to come up with the next 3 month excuse.. And the next..

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: Boeing to be caught with no pants.. Again.

        Boeing won't be allowed to fail.

        The USA is not going to hand the airliner market over to cheese-eating-surrender aircraft. No US airliner is even going to operate C-E-S aircraft unless they accidentally took over a Euro carrier that got forced out of the market.

        They will continue to get money from 'black' project everytime things look tough, and will continue to get 'support' from the regulators. the FAA aren't going to criticise Boeing that would be unpatriotic and probably communism.

    3. TheWeetabix


      Its loud theatre. "Look at uuuuuuuuus! Flying to spaaaaace (eventually). It's Booooo-ING! We're big, we're smart, no one else can compaaaaaaaaare. Eventually we will be theeeeeere!" with countermelody sung by NASA.

      Meanwhile the Musk and Bezos camps, starting from scratch have managed to repeatedly and reliably toss things into space.

      It's like Boeing/NASA *cant* stop visualising themselves as the only players in the room, with their "perfectly normally sized" bureaucracies.

  4. Dropper

    Just in time for the summer holidays eh?

    So what you're really saying is "delays at Heathrow again this year".

  5. Raphael

    I do appreciate them taking the extra time to do the extra checks, after all, it's not exactly something you want to be a "measure once, cut twice" scenario.

  6. CheesyTheClown

    I didn't realize they were still trying

    Honestly, I was under the impression that they had just given up. I wonder if they have a plan to how to lobby for a billion dollar a flight once BFR starts launching.

    1. 42656e4d203239 Silver badge

      Re: I didn't realize they were still trying

      >>I wonder if they have a plan to how to lobby for a billion dollar a flight

      Not for nothing is the SLS nicknamed the "Senate Launch System" - Boeing won't have to lobby too hard, unless Bezos' pipe dream actually starts working all of a sudden.

  7. Spherical Cow Silver badge

    Test first?

    Have they had a successful un-crewed mission to the ISS yet? I'd really like to see one of those before they try it with crew.

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