NASA and Boeing will broadcast live coverage of the CST-100 Starliner Pad Abort Test on Monday, Nov. 4, from Launch Complex 32 at White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico.
The test is scheduled for 9 a.m. EST (7 a.m. MST) with a three-hour test window. Live coverage is targeted to start at 8:50 a.m., on NASA Television and the agency’s website. Coverage will be adjusted as necessary within the window.
Boeing’s Pad Abort Test is part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program work with the American aerospace industry — through a public-private partnership — to launch astronauts on American rockets and spacecraft from American soil for the first time since 2011. The goal of the program is to provide safe, reliable and cost-effective transportation to and from the International Space Station, which would allow for additional research time and increase the opportunity for discovery aboard humanity’s testbed for exploration.
The test is designed to verify that each of Starliner’s systems will function not only separately, but in concert, to protect astronauts by carrying them safely away from the launch pad in the unlikely event of an emergency prior to liftoff. During the test, Starliner’s four launch abort engines and several orbital maneuvering and attitude control thrusters will fire, pushing the spacecraft approximately 1 mile above land and 1 mile north of the test stand.
The spacecraft’s crew module will use parachutes with landing airbags to touch down at White Sands Missile Range. It will be recovered and brought back to Launch Complex 32 for evaluation and analysis.
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