Boeing’s Starliner takes off
The CST-100 Starliner – with CST standing for Crew Space Transportation – is Boeing’s answer to the Commercial Crew Development program, designed to pilot crews to the ISS and any future space stations. Similar in concept to Lockheed Martin’s Orion module, the 4.56-metre (15-foot) capsule is designed to carry larger crews of up to seven people, though for this primary test it will launch unmanned. Like the Dragon 2 craft designed by SpaceX it will be reusable, with an estimated ten-mission usage.
The craft will perform its first test in March 2019, attempting to rendezvous and connect with the ISS using its NASA Docking System before returning to Earth for further analysis.