Boeing's Starliner Spacecraft Rockets Towards International Space Station

Boeing Co. BA spacecraft blasted into orbit and began racing toward the International Space Station, despite facing an issue with two of the thrusters the vehicle uses, reported WSJ.

Later Thursday, Boeing and NASA officials revealed that two of the thrusters used to maneuver the Starliner in orbit had failed. According to Mark Nappi, Boeing's vice president focused on the Starliner program; after those failures, a third thruster activated, allowing the vehicle to complete a key maneuver.

According to a National Aeronautics and Space Administration live broadcast, the Starliner spaceship launched into orbit shortly before 7 p.m. Eastern time Thursday from Kennedy Space Center in Florida, after months of delays. The vehicle is scheduled to fly to the space station on Friday and dock there before returning to Earth several days later.

An Atlas 5 rocket operated by United Launch Alliance, a company owned by Boeing and Lockheed Martin Corporation LMT., used its powerful boosters to launch the Starliner.

The capsule is set to carry food and other cargo to the space station in a trip that should take about a day and transport other items back to Earth.

The Starliner, a gumdrop-shaped vehicle with seven seats, has yet to complete a test mission to the orbiting facility. Boeing and NASA could not complete the first demonstration flight in 2019 due to a software glitch, and officials canceled a makeup mission last summer due to issues with the vehicle's valves.

Price Action: BA shares traded higher by 1.81% at $129.44 and LMT higher by 0.52% at $427.72 during the premarket session on Friday.

Posted In: Aerospace & DefenseIndustrialsNews