In December 2019 Boeing conducted the first unmanned flight of a manned spacecraft CST-100 Cockpit, but he failed to reach orbit and returned to Earth before reaching the ISS. After analyzing the situation, Boeing has decided to repeat unmanned flight, to ensure the safety of all vehicle systems before the first flight with crew on Board, reported in a statement of concern.
To date, the ISS flies several types of cargo spacecraft, but the delivery of the astronauts of all the countries participating in the project is only concerned with “Roskosmos” with spacecraft “Soyuz”. The United States before the termination of flights of the Space Shuttle in 2011 announced a program to develop private space ships, the finalists of which eventually became SpaceX and Boeing.
The company has repeatedly postponed the flight of their ships Crew Dragon and CST-100 Cockpit, but in 2019 reached a critical stage in the program by sending them into space unmanned. SpaceX did it in March, and Boeing held a launch in December. However, the results were different: the Crew Dragon successfully docked to the ISS and back, and the CST-100 Cockpit failed to reach orbit because of an error in the system timing. The error resulted in incorrect maneuver and too high fuel consumption, so the device did not fly to the ISS, and made some more maneuvers for further planting on the Ground.
Because the run is not ended in disaster and in the mission Cockpit has fulfilled most of the tests, Boeing and NASA for a long time, not announced, will require re-flight, or in this case, the Agency will make exceptions. On 6 March at a press conference on the results of the investigation into a failed mission assistant head of NASA’s manned flights saidthat the Agency is still not decided, but later in the day, Boeing is still said that a second unmanned flight will take place.
The company said that the experts took the decision to fully validate all aspects of the flight to the ISS on a different instance of the CST-100 Cockpit. In addition, Boeing said that the flight will be performed by the group, not funds NASA.
While the exact date of the flight has not been determined, but Boeing has statedthat he is scheduled for fall 2020. If the first manned flight of the Crew Dragon, previously scheduled for the end of may, will pass without incident, in the fourth quarter to be held the first of regular missions of this spacecraft to the ISS. In this case, it could potentially be a situation in which all three manned spacecraft to the ISS (Soyuz, CST-100 Cockpit and Crew Dragon) will be simultaneously docked to the station for a short time.
In addition to these three devices, there are two manned spacecraft: the Chinese “Shenzhou” and the American Orion, but he still made one unmanned space flight, and its first manned mission scheduled for 2022. During the Orion will fly to the planned lunar orbital station Gateway. Recently NASA announcedthat SpaceX has chosen to deliver cargo to the station using the Falcon Heavy rocket and a new cargo ship Dragon XL.