WMFE is Central Florida's primary provider of NPR programming on 90.7 FM and Classical Music on 90.7 HD2. Part of the community since 1965, WMFE focuses on providing quality national and local news and programming. We inspire and empower all Central Floridians to discover, grow and engage within and beyond their world.
Support for 90.7 WMFE is provided by

NASA, Boeing Launching Task Force To Uncover Starliner Anomaly

Boeing, NASA, and U.S. Army personnel work around the Boeing CST-100 Starliner spacecraft shortly after it landed in White Sands, New Mexico, Sunday, Dec. 22, 2019. The landing completes an abbreviated Orbital Flight Test for the company that still meets several mission objectives for NASA’s Commercial Crew program. The Starliner spacecraft launched on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket at 6:36 a.m. Friday, Dec. 20 from Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Photo Credit: (NASA/Bill Ingalls)

Stay up to date on coronavirus coverage: Listen to WMFE on your radio, the WMFE mobile app or your smart speaker — say “Alexa, play NPR” or “WMFE” and you’ll be connected.

NASA and Boeing are appointing a new task force to investigate what went wrong during a test flight last month of a new spacecraft. The spacecraft is aimed at restoring the country’s capability to launch astronauts from American soil.

Boeing’s Starliner is one of two capsules NASA is helping to develop to launch astronauts to the International Space Station. The other is SpaceX’s Crew Dragon capsule.

After the Starliner’s failed test flight, the task force will investigate why an onboard clock issue caused the capsule to fire its engines incorrectly. The spacecraft ran out of fuel and aborted a planned rendezvous with the space station. Instead it spent two days in orbit, testing its systems before returning to Earth.

The uncrewed test flight was designed to help NASA certify the capsule for human passengers. It’s unclear whether the anomaly will delay a scheduled crewed test mission later this year.

NASA says the Boeing investigation will take about two months.

SpaceX successfully completed its uncrewed test flight back in March and is planning a critical test of the capsules abort system later this month. NASA aims to launch humans from the U.S. this year, ending a nearly decade-long reliance on the Russian space agency Roscosmos for rides to the station.


Get The 90.7 WMFE Newsletter

Your trusted news source for the latest Central Florida COVID-19 news, updates on special programs and more. Support our extended coverage.

GET THE LATEST

WMFE Journalistic Ethics Code | Public Media Code of Integrity

Brendan Byrne

About Brendan Byrne

Space Reporter and 'Are We There Yet?' Host

Brendan covers space news for WMFE, everything from rocket launches to the latest scientific discoveries in our universe. He hosts WMFE's weekly radio show and podcast "Are We There Yet?" which explores human space exploration. He also helps produce WMFE's public affairs show "Intersection," working with host ... Read Full Bio »

TOP