The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is determined to launch crewed spaceflights to the international Space Station from U.S and for this reason NASA has been looking for private commercial space companies to take over the launch of crewed spaceflights. NASA has contracted both Boeing and SpaceX to pursue the crewed spaceflight launch back in 2014, SpaceX was the first space commercial company to launch its crewed spaceflight but Boeing is expected to launch its Starliner Capsule at the end of the year when both are expected to conduct their crewed flight test.
Boeing’s first crewed spaceflight to the International Space Station may take longer that it was scheduled initially. Boeing’s Starliner Capsule was scheduled to take NASA astronauts to the International Space Station for two weeks but NASA is thinking of extending the trip be at least 6months, there is also a possibility that NASA will add a third person on the crew list because initially the spaceflight was supposed to carry two crew persons.
The main goal of this crewed flight test is supposed to simply test the safety of the crew members in the spaceflight. But by NASA wanting to extend the trip would completely restructure the trip for Boeing’s Starliner first trip to the ISS and this is the reason why these flight tests could turn out to be the actual launch of the crewed spaceflight even though NASA has not confirmed this yet.
But also NASA could be extending this trip because they currently running out of ways to get their astronauts to the International Space Station. Initially NASA used to transport the astronauts on Russian Soyuz rockets and now Russian is running short of the seats since its fully booked for the next two years leaving NASA with no option than to look for other means to transport its astronauts and that explains why they want to extend Boeing’s first trip from two weeks to 6 months.
However there is a major concern that the both commercial space companies (Boeing and SpaceX) will not be ready support the mission after the test since they have been experiencing setbacks and they could only be ready for the test flight which will take them months after the test for them to be in a position to take full mission.