NASA has scheduled Oct. 13 as the date it aims to launch an Orbital ATK-built Cygnus spacecraft on a mission to deliver more than 5,100 pounds of crew supplies and research equipment to the International Space Station.
Officials from both NASA and Orbital ATK plan to roll out Cygnus to a launch pad at the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport in Virginia by Oct. 11 after they completed flight readiness assessments on the cargo spacecraft, according to a blog article published Tuesday on the agency’s website.
The agency said Tuesday that Cygnus is set to launch Oct. 13 at 9:13 p.m. Eastern Time onboard Orbital ATK’s updated Antares 230 rocket and a live coverage of the mission will begin at 8:15 p.m. on NASA’s website and television channel.
It will mark the sixth cargo delivery mission under the company’s Commercial Resupply Services contract with the space agency.
The spacecraft, nicknamed S.S. Alan Poindexter, will carry an investigation that seeks to examine the burning process of fuels and a new station research facility for microgravity environment studies aboard the orbital laboratory.
NASA expects the vehicle to reach ISS by Oct. 16. and said the station’s Expedition 49 astronauts Kate Rubins and Takuya Onishi will work to grab the cargo module with a Canadarm2 robotic arm.
The agency intends for Cygnus to remain at the space station through Nov. 18 if the spacecraft arrives at the station.