HOUSTON, Feb. 27, 2014 -- Chris Ferguson, Boeing's director of Crew and Mission Operations and commander of the final Space Shuttle flight, virtually returned to space recently in the Boeing [NYSE: BA] Crew Space Transportation (CST)-100 simulator to satisfy testing requirements for the spacecraft.
Ferguson performed manual piloting activities including on-orbit attitude and translation maneuvers, docking and backing away from a virtual International Space Station and a manual re-entry to Earth in the simulator.
"It was great to be back in the pilotís seat, even if I didn't leave the ground," Ferguson said. "It's important for the spacecraft to have manual controls because although it's designed to be largely autonomous, the pilot should always be able to back up that autonomy. Manual flight controls provide a sort of a belt-and-suspenders capability for piloting the spacecraft."
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