At the same time, both NASA and Boeing say if astronauts were aboard the Starliner, they would still be safe. Eastern Standard Time today, Friday, December 20, 2019, from Space Launch Complex 41 at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida.
The Orbital Flight Test of Boeing is equal to the unscrewed SpaceX Crew Dragon project that also succeeded in reaching the ISS earlier this year. "As a result of starting the clock at the wrong time, the spacecraft upon reaching space thought she was later in the mission and, being autonomous, started to behave that way".
Starliner was able to establish a communications link with the ISS, and to test in space its docking mechanism as well as its solar panels, batteries, thrusters and heat regulation system.
During the press briefing, the authorities from Boeing and NASA revealed that the problem occurred in the time system of the capsule.
The CST-100 Orbital Flight Test was originally intended as a full automated mission test of the spacecraft before sending up an astronaut crew.
Minutes after liftoff, Starliner detached from the main rocket booster, aiming for a rendezvous 409km into space with the space station.
"The spacecraft now is in a stable configuration while flight controllers are troubleshooting", said a statement on NASA's website.
Boeing has been creating Starliner under a multibillion-greenback NASA industrial crew deal.
Boeing is competing with SpaceX to be the first American company to provide commercial crew capabilities to NASA.
As they flew over Jacksonville, Florida, the pilot notified passengers the launch was about to happen, so they would not be alarmed. For NASA, it's been nearly a decade since it launched astronauts from the United States territory.
"It appears as though the mission elapse timing system had an error in it", Bridenstine said.
Should anything warrant skipping the first attempt at landing tomorrow, NASA and Boeing have a back-up landing opportunity about eight hours after the first.