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TechCrunch Space: You rock(et) my world, moms

Hello and welcome back to TechCrunch Space. Happy belated Mother’s Day!

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If you’re looking for a Starliner mission recap, you’ll have to wait a little longer, because the mission has officially been delayed. At this point, we’re looking at no earlier than May 17 for the launch. The long delay is to ensure launch provider United Launch Alliance can roll the rocket back to the Vertical Integration Facility hangar to replace a valve. (Always those stinkin’ valves!)

Image Credits: Boeing (opens in a new window)

Not quite a scoop this week, but I did write an exclusive on a five-month-old startup called Layup Parts, which has closed a $9 million financing round led by Founders Fund. The company wants to bring automation to composite parts manufacturing, in the same way that Protolabs and Xometry have transformed CNC machining, for example.

Carbon fiber composite product for motor sport and automotive racing
Carbon fiber composite product for motor sport and automotive racing.
Image Credits: PragasitLalao / Getty Images

What we’re reading

Instead of recommending something to read this week, I’m going to recommend something to watch: this fantastic 30-minute video from the great Everyday Astronaut. It takes a deep dive into the first Polaris Dawn mission and the new spacesuits the private astronauts will be wearing, designed by SpaceX.

We all know (and love) the International Space Station, but before there was the ISS there was a little orbiting platform known as Skylab. And 50 years ago, on May 14, 1973, Skylab lifted off on the last Saturn V rocket. 

Illustration of the Skylab orbiting space station, surrounded by portraits of astronauts from the three manned missions to the station, 1974. Pictured are, top row, from left, Skylab 2 astronauts Charles ‘Pete’ Conrad Jr., Joseph Kerwin, Paul Weitz. bottom row, from left, Skylab 3 astronauts Alan Bean, Owen Garriott, and Jack Lousma, and Skylab 4 astronauts William Pogue, Edward Gibson, and Gerald Carr.
Image Credits: NASA/Interim Archives / Getty Images

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