NASA resupply mission prepares for Saturday launch to space station

NASA resupply mission prepares for Saturday launch to space station

The Antares rocket and Cygnus capsule for the resupply mission dubbed NG-15 on the pad before launch, scheduled for Feb. 20, 2021.

The Antares rocket and also Cygnus pill for the resupply mission referred to as NG-15 on the pad prior to launch, set upfor Feb 20, 2021.
(Image credit scores: Northrop Grumman)

NASA and also Northrop Grumman are established to launch a Cygnus freight pill chock-full of study and also materials to the International Space Station (ISS) on Saturday,Feb 20.

The trip will certainly launch from Pad 09A at Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia throughout an intended five-minute home window that opens up at 12:36 p.m. EST (1736 GMT).

A two-stage Antares rocket, standing 139 feet (42.5 meters) high, will certainly carry the Cygnus spacecraft right into orbit, starting a two-day trip to the ISS. Once it gets to the space station, Cygnus will certainly berth to the orbital station with the assistance of the station’s robot arm.

Related: See fantastic launch pictures of Antares and also Cygnus NG-13!

Both the Cygnus spacecraft and also the Antares rocket are developed by Northrop Grumman, which is just one of 2 business that are presently providing freight to the ISSfor NASA (Space X is the various other.) The duo presented to the launch pad onFeb 17 in advance of Saturday’s intended launch.

The mission, marked NG-15, is the 14th functional resupply launch for the space station by Northrop Grumman and also its precursors,Orbital Sciences and also Orbital ATK, as component of its business resupply solutions agreement withNASA

Northrop Grumman is proceeding its practice of calling the Cygnus spacecraft after a person that made crucial payments to human spaceflight. In this situation, the silvery spacecraft is called the S.S. Katherine Johnson, after the late mathematician whose estimations made it feasible for John Glen to orbit the Earth 59 years back.

Cargo ships bring necessary materials and also food for the astronauts on the space station, yet additionally lots of study examinations. On this mission, Cygnus will certainly provide around 8,200 pounds. (3,700 kilos) of scientific research experiments, materials and also equipment for the space station’s Expedition 64 team.

The spacecraft will certainly additionally bring 30 cubesats as component of a pupil outreach program for Virginia’s Commercial Space Flight Authority that it will certainly release soon after releasing.

Typically freight vessels continue to be affixed to the station for a month or more, permitting the team to re-fill them either with freight to return to Earth or, as for Cygnus, with garbageto shed up when the spacecraft comes back the ambience.

Tucked inside the freight automobile will certainly be a variety of study examinations, consisting of a research that will certainly take a look at muscular tissue toughness in worms, one that will certainly take a look at printing protein-based man-made retinas in space, an additional that will certainly examine a brand-new space computer system, and also much more.

Japanese astronaut and also Expedition 64 crewmember, Soichi Noguchi, will certainly utilize the station’s robot arm to grapple the Cygnus, with a help from NASA crewmateMike Hopkins Mission Control in Houston will certainly after that manage the spacecraft’s setup on the station’s Unity component Earth- encountering port.

Cygnus will certainly continue to be linked to the station for around 2 months prior to carrying out a harmful re-entry right into the Earth’s ambience.

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