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July 06
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A Boeing astronaut capsule carrying only a test dummy landed on the International Space Station for the first time, a huge achievement for the company after several years of failed launches, PA MEDIA reports.

With the arrival of the Starliner, Nasa has finally realized its long-standing effort to bring crew capsules to the space station from rival U.S. companies.

Elon Musk's company SpaceX conducted a similar test three years ago and has since sent 18 astronauts as well as tourists to the space station.

The only time Boeing's Starliner flew into space, it never made it close to the station, ending up in the wrong orbit.

This time, after launching Thursday, the refurbished spacecraft made it to the right spot and docked with the station 25 hours later.

If the rest of the Starliner mission goes well, Boeing could be ready to launch its first crew by the end of this year.

The astronauts, who will likely be part of the first Starliner crew, joined Boeing and Nasa dispatchers in Houston watching from nearly 270 miles away.

The Boeing Starliner's first test flight in 2019 was plagued by software bugs that aborted the flight and could have led to the death of the spacecraft.

The errors were fixed, but when the new capsule was waiting for takeoff last summer, corroded valves stopped the countdown.

New repairs followed, costing Boeing nearly $600 million.

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