Boeing Starliner progress

Starliner (Boeing)

Starliner is designed for compatiblity with Atlas V (ULA), Delta IV (ULA),  and Vulcan Centaur (ULA) and Falcon 9 (SpaceX).

Functionality Crew Module (CM)

  • Low orbit and ISS.
  • Crew capacity up to 7.
  • Can re boost ISS (now done by Soyuz and Progress).
  • Parachute and airbag system.
  • Can land on land and or water (in case of emergency). Crew Dragon: Can land on water only. Salt water adds complexity to refurbishment.
  • Easy recovery.
  • Relatively clean vehicle when landed.
  • Easy path to refurbishment and re usability.
  • Turn around in 6 months.
  • Re usability 10 times.

Characteristics CST-100 version

  • 439,000 lb thrust launch aboard engines.
  • 24 x 1,500 lb thrust orbital maneuvering and attitude control thrusters.
  • 28 x 100 lb thrust Reaction Control System (RCS) can reboost ISS No reboosting ISS.

Boeing Starliner CST-100 sequence of events (CFT-1) (00-00-2024)

  • Crew Space Transportation (CST)-100 Starliner spacecraft (CST-100). Starliner named Calypso.
  • Crew Flight Test (Boe-CFT) will be the first crewed mission of the Boeing Starliner (CFT-1) and the third orbital flight test of the Starliner overall.
  • Crew: Butch Wilmore (Starliner CFT Commander, NASA) and Suni Williams (Starliner CFT Pilot, NASA).
  • ULA Atlas V N22, designated AV-085. Configuration with two solid rocket boosters and a dual-engine Centaur upper stage.

Launch window

  • Launch date: NET 06-05-2024

  • Launch time: 10:34 pm ET / 02:34 UTC / 04:34 CEST

  • Launch Boeing Starliner CST-100 with ULA Atlas V N22.
  • USA Florida, Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, SLC-41 (KSC)
      • T-02:47:00 Propellant loading takes 2 hours.
      • T-01:00:00 Crew arms launch aboard system switch.
      • T-01:00:00 Gravity indicator secure test (seat no. 2).
      • T-01:00:00 Hatch closed.
      • T-01:00:00 Cabin pressure test.
      • T-01:00:00 Team clears the White room pad (crew access tower). Pad team is called the Blue Team (5 people from Boeing and 3 from ULA).
      • T-00:11:00 Tower closeout.
      • T-00:10:00 Arm retract, on internal power.
      • T-00:07:00 LC poll (see image). Clocks are set.
      • T-00:06:00 Go for launch.
      • T-00:05:00 Configuration for terminal count.
      • T-00:04:00 Start terminal count. Mark clock set.
      • T-00:03:50 Ground systems enabled.
      • T-00:03:30 Pressurization for flight.
      • T-00:00:00 Liftoff
      • T+00:00:12 Roll program.
      • T+00:00:40 to T+00:01:25 Max Q.
      • T+00:02:35 Solid rocket booster (SRB) burnout.
      • T+00:02:40 Solid rocket booster jettison.
      • T+00:04:30 Booster engine cutoff (Beco).
      • T+00:04:35 Booster separation ascent cover jettison
      • T+00:04:45 Centaur ignition.
      • T+00:05:00 Telemetry: Alt 121 km, Velocity 4,7 km/sec, downrange 502 km.
      • T+00:05:05 Aeroskirt jettison.
      • T+00:12:00 Main engine cutoff (Meco).
      • T+00:15:00 Spacecraft separation.
      • T+00:31:00 Orbital insertion maneuver.

Back shell Starliner (Boeing)

  • The back shell of the Starliner space craft is covered with a composite material (porous carbon Matrix). During reentry it will heat up, break down and later release gas. The shield is light weight. (no tiles). Non-ablative heat shields dont’t break down at the same time meaning they’re easy to reuse but theay are heavier because they are thicker and they are also harder to work with. Another disadvantage is that they would lose tiles and break them all the time. To handle this Boeing uses the ablative heat shield for the main area where it gets the most heating and uses the non-ablative one on the backshell.

Back shell Crew Dragon (SpaceX)

  • SpaceX uses Pika X (phenolic impregnated carbon ablator (1 piece, reusable) on the Crew Dragon back shell. Additionally SpaceX uses SPAM (SpaceX Proprietary Ablative Material). After each flight Pika X and SPAM are removed and replaced.

Landing vehicles

  • On the edge of the landing zone is a Mobile Tracking Vehicle (MBTV)
  • On the edge of the landing zone is a Mobile Landing Control Center (MLCC)
  • On the edge of the landing zone are Recovery Vehicles (RV)

Landing process sequence of events (Boe-CFT)

  • De-orbit burn (4 thrusters for 55 seconds, MAG thrusters).
  • SM jettison.
  • 8 minutes from touch down. First views (NASA WB-57).
  • Altitude 40 km.
  • 6 minutes from touch down.
  • Altitude 3 km.
  • Forward heat shield jettison
  • Drogue parachutes out (2)
  • Main parachutes out (3)
  • 3 minutes from touchdown
  • Base heat shield jettison
  • Airbags inflating (6)
  • Touch down (White Sands, NM)

2019-2023 Starliner completed

  • 00-09-2015 Starliner name unveiled
  • 00-08-2016 Crew access arm installed
  • 00-08-2016 Drop tests
  • 00-10-2016 Engine tests
  • 00-01-2017 Spacesuit reveal
  • 00-03-2017 Boeing mission simulator installed
  • 00-03-2017 Parachute drop test
  • 00-05-2017 Seat drop tests
  • 20-12-2019 OFT-1 (OFT1). Test objectives achieved:
      • Space to space communication.
      • Startracker alignment using Vista navication systems.
      • Extended an retrackted NASA docking system.
      • Rosie (ATD) Data collection.
      • Abort burn capability (needed for proximity operations with ISS.
  • 19-05-2022 OFT-2 (OFT2). ULA Atlas V, SLC-41.
  • 03-11-2022 Suited EMER SIM Operations in the Boeing Starliner spacecraft simulator at NASA’s Johnson Space Center.
  • 00-07-2023 Delayed. Problems with the suspension lines on Starliner’s main parachutes and much of the capsule’s wiring was wrapped with flammable tape.
  • 18-03-2024 Two weeks fuel load test.
  • 17-04-2024 Rollout Capsule and Service Module from Boeing’s Commercial Crew and Cargo Processing Facility (C3PF) to ULA’s Vertical Integration Facility at Space Launch Complex 41 (SLC-41). There Starliner will be lifted onto the Atlas V followed by a dry run with the crew and rollout to the pad.

2024 Starliner in progress

  • 00-00-2024 Eight days docked to ISS.
  • 00-00-2024 Landing in White Sands NM.
Atlas V and Starliner LC poll
Atlas V and Starliner LC poll