Tuesday , August 9 2022

SpaceX, Boeing's design risks threaten new delays for the United States space program


Immediately before the first un-manned test trip scheduled for March 2 under the NASA multibillion-dollar Commercial Crew Program, NASA's security advisory panel set out four "key items of risk" in its annual report in 2018 earlier this month.

For Boeing, they include the structural weakness of the capsule when the heat shield is used. For SpaceX, the report mentioned the redesign of a SpaceX rocket canister following the 2016 explosion and a "loading and going" process of filling the rocket with the current crew already in the capsule. "Parachute performance" continued to be a problem for both companies.

"There are serious challenges to the current launch timetables for SpaceX and Boeing," said the report.

Two people with direct information about the program told Reuters that the space agency's concerns exceeded the four listed items, and included a one-off risk ledger in early February Includes 30 to 35 technical concerns in place for SpaceX and Boeing.

Reuters could not check out all the bronze items. But he said the sources that are familiar with the issue that companies have to "" most "address the worries and concerns before flying from astronaut and, ultimately, tourists to space.

NASA's risk database is updated regularly during NASA's strict certification process, which includes data collection, testing and collaboration with SpaceX and Boeing, the people said.

Boeing and SpaceX systems have already been deferred several times in recent years, which are common in this sector given the complexity of the construction of a multibody-dollar space that can bring the gravity of the ground .

NASF spokesman Joshua Finch queried all the technical questions on Boeing and SpaceX systems for companies, stating confidentiality, but said: "Safe flight always takes priority over a timetable."

Boeing spokesman, Josh Barrett, said the company "closed" the risk of the capsule's structural weakness when it completed its structural test program in January. Although Boeing works through a number of other issues, they do not "drive any major changes to the architectural system."

"Our numbers show that we are more than NASA's security requirements," said Barrett.

SpaceX spokesman James Gleeson said the company, who works with NASA, has developed "one of the safest, most advanced systems of ever built human lighting".

"SpaceX is not more important than a flying crew safe," said Gleeson, calling it "central to our company's long-term goal of enabling people who dream of flying to space."

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