Boarding (白兵戦, Hakuheisen, lit. Close-quarters combat) is the action of forcibly placing personnel onto a ship.
Aside from normal boarding of passengers and crew, boarding is usually carried out in order to seize control of a ship. It is an activity which is often carried out by pirates during piracy  and by armed factions during combat .
In order to carry out boarding operations in space, the boarding party must make their way from their own ship to the target vessel. Either they must spacewalk to the other vessel or the vessel they are on must connect to it, either through docking  or ramming . Assault ships are built for the purpose of boarding other ships .