back to article Boeing's Calamity Capsule launch date slides into the future

Boeing's Starliner, aka the Calamity Capsule, has suffered another setback after a hoped-for May 25 launch date has been dropped as engineers work to deal with a helium leak in the spacecraft's propulsion system. NASA has reportedly dropped the not earlier than (NET) date to give engineers more time to evaluate the issue. " …

  1. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

    The team has been in meetings for two consecutive days

    My sympathies to the engineers trapped in those meeting rooms.

    1. Paul Herber Silver badge

      Two days. That's about 50 Earth orbits.

    2. ThatOne Silver badge
      Devil

      > The team has been in meetings for two consecutive days

      That was to fix a date for the meeting to elect the committee which will explore the calendar of meetings to find dates for the meetings which will...

      It's meetings all the way down...

      The good thing is that at least their meetings don't disassemble in flight. So far.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        "The good thing is that at least their meetings don't disassemble in flight. So far."

        You may be surprised at just how many meetings break apart with no results, often running way over time, probably over budget (critically low comestibles by the end) and are often full of dissembling from start to finish. But they rarely make the news unless politicians are involved.

        I have know meetings to come to and end due to overrunning while a dissembler was in full flight too.

    3. Geoff May (no relation)

      It is called a "Meeting Event Horizon" and the acronym is appropriate.

  2. nematoad Silver badge

    A good thing?

    It is just as well that Boeing are being supervised by NASA rather than the FAA.

    It looks like Boeing will not be able to pull the wool over NASA with problems of the Starliner as they appear to have done with both the 737Max and all the other quality control failures that lead to the door plug incident.

    I just wonder what it would take for the US authorities to decide that pumping money into such a slip-shod company like Boeing is just throwing good money after bad.

    Though I do note that the Starliner contract was not the usual cost plus one normally used and that Boeing are making huge losses on the Starliner contract. Maybe that would explain all the missteps with this project.

    1. ThatOne Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: A good thing?

      > I just wonder what it would take for the US authorities to decide that pumping money into such a slip-shod company like Boeing is just throwing good money after bad.

      Boeing's lobbying drying up?

    2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: A good thing?

      "Though I do note that the Starliner contract was not the usual cost plus one normally used and that Boeing are making huge losses on the Starliner contract. Maybe that would explain all the missteps with this project."

      It does make one wonder if some or all of the recent issues are due to pressure from higher ups to get the fscking thing out the door before they lose any more of their bonuses and would this He leak even have been spotted if not for the abort due to the launcher issue.

  3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    The crew will probably be hoping it's posponed past their retirement dates.

    1. sanwin

      If it's a Boeing I ain't going!

  4. StrangerHereMyself Silver badge

    Patience

    What's a few more days. We waited a decade or more for this moment. Never mind that SpaceX has been ferrying astronauts up and down from the ISS for almost 5 years for half the price.

    I'm betting that once Boeing gets this thing to fly successfully they'll start prodding for more money. Or threatening to pull out if their demands aren't met.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Patience

      Maybe Dreamchaser will get their first and NASA won't give a shit if Boeing spit the dummy :-)

  5. Omnipresent Bronze badge

    rubber bands and chewing gum.

    It's made by Boeing so... you would have to be a loon to strap yourself into it. The best thing it has going for it is NASA still has some oversight. Imagine training to be an astronaut, and you get assigned maiden voyage of the newest Boeing built rocket ship.

    Life's short, then....

    1. Bitbeisser

      Re: rubber bands and chewing gum.

      Flex Seal. Works, for everything, everywhere, haven't you seen the advertising?

  6. Pete 2 Silver badge

    The simple option

    > engineers have been unable to come up with a rationale that would allow the Starliner team to proceed with a May 25 launch or resolve the issue.

    Just give it up!

    The Americans have "Lemon laws" that require car manufacturers to give refunds on new cars that are (to be blunt) crap. That have faults from delivery that cannot be put right.

    Boing should realise that this technology is simply beyond their capability.

  7. spold Silver badge

    Helium leak

    I'm envisioning a bunch of engineers talking like ducks.

  8. karlkarl Silver badge

    > Boeing's Starliner, aka the Calamity Capsule

    Wasn't the ill fated Titan submarine Boeing's Calamity Capsule?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Careful what you ask for !!!

    " ... One of NASA's goals with the Commercial Crew Program was to create redundancy ..."

    This has been achieved 100%, the Boeing 'It's not going' capsule is totally redundant !!!

    I am sure quite a few astronauts are hoping that it stays 100% redundant .... for their sake !!!

    :)

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "However, engineers have been unable to come up with a rationale that would allow the Starliner team to proceed with a May 25 launch or resolve the issue. "

    By rationale, they mean excuse, right?

    1. Ian Johnston Silver badge

      I think it means that every time someone from Boeing says "Sod it, what could go wrong?" someone from NASA takes a short length of O-ring out of their pocket and submerges it in a jug of iced water ...

      1. John Robson Silver badge

        One of the best pieces of science communication ever.

        YouTube "I believe that has some significance for our problem"

    2. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Re: rationale

      Part of a valid rationale would be "The leak is currently so slow that helium pressure will remain high enough to return to Earth on schedule". I think they had that part. The parts that are less clear include:

      Can you prove that vibration from launch will not make the leak worse?

      What if return is delayed by bad weather?

  11. ravenviz Silver badge

    Gerald: It’s a “woop”, professor, a “woop of gorillas”. It’s a “flange of baboons”, for god’s sake.

  12. Bitbeisser

    Looks like that QC is once again rearing its ugly head at Boeing....

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