NASA commercial cargo provider Orbital ATK is on track for its seventh commercial resupply services mission to the International Space Station for 11:11 a.m. EDT Tuesday at the start of a 30-minute launch window. Launching on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket, the uncrewed Cygnus spacecraft will carry more than 7,600 pounds of science research, crew supplies and hardware to the orbiting laboratory in support of the crew members.
NASA Television will provide multiple broadcasts around launch activities. These events will also stream live on the agency’s website at www.nasa.gov/live. Today, NASA TV will air a prelaunch news conference at 10:30 a.m.
The first “What’s on Board” science briefing begins at 1 p.m. Participants will be:
- Tara Ruttley of NASA’s Johnson Space Center and Dr. Mike Roberts of CASIS will provide a science overview of what’s on board Cygnus.
- Howard Levine and Bryan Onate, both of NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, will discuss the Advanced Plant Habitat.
- Sourav Sinha, Oconolinx, will discuss ADCs in Microgravity.
- Henry Martin of NanoRacks and Davide Masutti of the Von Karman Institute will discuss CubeSats including the QB50.
- Julian Rubinfien, student, and Scott Copeland of Boeing, will discuss Julian’s winning experiment for Genes in Space.
The second “What’s on Board” briefing will air at 2 p.m. featuring Joe Fust, United Launch Alliance and Paul Escalera, Orbital ATK
Our launch day coverage of the Cygnus launch begins at 10 a.m. Tuesday on NASA TV and on NASA’s Launch Blog at http://blogs.nasa.gov/orbital. Learn more about the Orbital ATK CRS-7 mission by going to the mission home page at: http://www.nasa.gov/orbitalatk.
United Launch Alliance and Orbital ATK’s Launch Readiness Review for the Atlas V rocket with the Cygnus cargo resupply module was held April 15 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Launch managers from ULA, Orbital ATK and NASA determined all is ready for a targeted launch to the International Space Station on Tuesday, April 18. The liftoff from Space Launch Complex 41 is scheduled for 11:11 a.m. EDT and there is a 30-minute launch opportunity available.
NASA TV launch coverage will begin at 10 a.m. EDT on air and streaming at www.nasa.gov/ntv. Ten minutes prior to liftoff, NASA TV’s YouTube channel will debut full, 360 coverage of the launch at http://youtube.com/nasatelevision
Learn more about the 360 video coverage at https://go.nasa.gov/2ove1Yw
NASA, Orbital ATK and United Launch Alliance, or ULA, now are targeting launch of Orbital ATK’s seventh commercial resupply services mission to the International Space Station no earlier than Monday, March 27. The additional time allows the ULA team to troubleshoot a hydraulic issue discovered on ground support equipment needed for launch. Orbital ATK has contracted with ULA for its Atlas V rocket for the launch service, which will lift off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Orbital ATK’s Cygnus cargo spacecraft is packed with 7,600 pounds of supplies and research for crew aboard the orbiting laboratory. The Atlas V and Cygnus remain secure and continue to undergo processing for launch. The encapsulated Cygnus spacecraft has been mounted to the top of the Atlas V in preparation for launch.
NASA, Orbital ATK and United Launch Alliance (ULA) now are targeting launch of Orbital ATK’s seventh commercial resupply services mission to the International Space Station at 9 p.m. EDT Friday, March 24. An option exists to move the launch earlier to March 23, if the Eastern Range becomes available. The additional time allows the ULA team to replace and retest a first stage hydraulic component. Orbital ATK has contracted with ULA for its Atlas V rocket for the launch service, which will lift off from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Orbital ATK’s Cygnus cargo spacecraft is packed with 7,600 pounds of supplies and research for crew aboard the orbiting laboratory.
A supply spacecraft set to carry thousands of pounds of experiments and equipment to the International Space Station will also carry the name John Glenn, Orbital ATK said Thursday during a ceremony dedicating the mission to the first American to orbit the Earth.
“John Glenn was probably responsible for more students studying math and science and being interested in space than anyone,” said former astronaut Brian Duffy, Orbital ATK’s vice president of Exploration Systems. “When he flew into space in 1962, there was not a child then who didn’t know his name. He’s the one that opened up space for all of us.”
Glenn, who passed away in December at age 95, was one of NASA’s original seven astronauts. After making his landmark orbital mission in February 1962, he served as a U.S. senator from Ohio. After retiring from politics, Glenn made his second spaceflight in 1998 as part of the STS-95 crew flying space shuttle Discovery.
The spacecraft will carry 7,600 pounds of cargo to the station and will be lifted into space atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket. Read the full story at http://go.nasa.gov/2moxJnq
Photo credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett
Tonight’s launch of an Orbital ATK Cygnus spacecraft atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V went smoothly from countdown through liftoff and ascent. Now the spacecraft and its 7,500 pounds of important scientific equipment and supplies for the crew is speeding toward the International Space Station and a rendezvous early Saturday morning. Read what this mission means for the research aboard the station and other factors at http://go.nasa.gov/1pHzRaE. And that wraps up our coverage this evening of the CRS-6 launch. Thanks for following along with us! Photo credit: NASA/Kim Shiflett
With Cygnus in its proper orbit and set up to fly on its own to the International Space Station, officials from NASA, Orbital ATK which built and flies Cygnus, and United Launch Alliance, which operates the Atlas V launch vehicle, offered congratulations to the flight teams and work that went into the flawless countdown and liftoff.
“Clearly this team was ready to go do this launch tonight,” said Kenneth Todd, the space station’s Operations Integration manager. “The ISS is ready and the crew is ready.”
The countdown and flight proceeded smoothly, something that did not go unnoticed.
“We all know it takes a lot of hard work to make it look easy and the team did that,” said Frank Culbertson, president of Orbital ATK’s Space Systems Group.
ULA’s Vern Thorp put the 21-minute flight to orbit into perspective: That’s faster than most pizza deliveries,” he said.
Photo credit: NASA/Ben Smegelsky
The Cygnus spacecraft is recharging its batteries now that both of its circular solar arrays are unfolded and opened to gather the sun’s energy. “This means that we have come to a successful conclusion of our launch tonight,” said NASA Launch Commentator George Diller. Launch photo by NASA/Kim Shiflett
The Orbital ATK team has confirmation from its Cygnus spacecraft that the first solar array has deployed as planned. The second is unfurling now.
The twin solar arrays of the Cygnus spacecraft have begun their deployment, the Orbital ATK mission control team reports.