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Boeing's Starliner docks with International Space Station

By Adam Schrader & Amy Thompson & Daniel Uria
Boeing's Starliner docks with International Space Station
United Launch Alliance launches its Atlas V rocket to boost the Boeing Starliner spacecraft for NASA from Complex 41 at the Cape Canaveral Space Force Station, Florida on Thursday. Photo by Joe Marino/UPI | License Photo

May 20 (UPI) -- Boeing's Starliner space craft docked with the International Space Station for the first time Friday.

The uncrewed test flight docked with the space station at 8:28 p.m. EDT, NASA said in a tweet.

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"#Starliner has completed hard capture, successfully docking to @Space_Station," Boeing Space tweeted.

Before docking, the Starliner performed an automatic retreat back to 200 meters from the outpost showing "its ability to back away from the station in a controlled and timely manner," the company said.

It then held within 10 meters of the space station before docking to wait for optimal lighting.

The Starliner was successfully launched by the aerospace company and NASA from the Space Launch Complex 41 at Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida on Thursday .

The flight is a repeat of a 2019 test flight that was cut short after Boeing and NASA detected anomalies with the spacecraft and its software, which cost Boeing $600 million.

The successful completion of the unmanned mission would pave the way for a crewed test mission later this year.

Developed as part of a public-private partnership, the Starliner spacecraft will give NASA a second spacecraft to ferry astronauts to and from the space station.

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