NASA Has Launched Cygnus, A US Rocket To The ISS

The Cygnus spaceship will return with approximately 3,400 kilograms of cargo to the International Space Station. The rocket was lifted off recently from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility. It transports load with NASA’s resupply task for the ISS.

The rocket has been dubbed Antares and was developed by Northrop Grumman, launched at 3:21 PM, bringing Cygnus to the ISS. The spaceship succeeded in detaching from the Antares almost nine minutes after the blastoff, traveling on its path to the space station, as NASA’s live broadcast indicated.

Cygnus’s Mission to Bring Samples from The ISS

Cygnus is returning to ISS with almost 3,400 kilograms of cargo, such as bone loss, testing items of tissue culture, and phage treatment. The research will prove a new small scanning electron microscope. Such a thing can activate real-time, calculations of micro- and nanostructures at the ISS, and on-site imagining.

The skill to figure out small fragments is required for deep space traveling beyond low-Earth Orbit and for crewed flight since those samples can’t be returned to our planet, according to the space agency. Moreover, fresh vegetables and fruits are one of the supplies prepared to hit the ISS. Two astronauts will catch Cygnus on the ISS on Tuesday, and it will stay there for almost three months before leaving with around 3,720 kilograms of cargo for transfer.

Fun Facts About the Mission

As a fun fact, the Cygnus spaceship was named by Northrop Grumman after Robert Henry-Lawrence Jr., a former astronaut, known as the first African American astronaut. As for the Antares rocket, previously named Taurus II, is an expandable liftoff system produced by Orbital Sciences Corporation and the Yuzhnoye Design Bureau.

It is part of NASA’s CRS and COTS projects to launch the Cygnus spaceship to the ISS. Antares can liftoff loads up to 8,000 kilograms into LEO (low-Earth orbit) and is the biggest rocket managed by Northrop Grumman.