Antares NG-10: What’s On Board?

Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus cargo spacecraft is set to lift off aboard the company’s Antares rocket on Thursday, Nov. 15 at 4:49 a.m. EST (9:49 a.m. UTC) from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

Under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services contract, Cygnus will carry about 7,500 pounds of crew supplies and hardware to the International Space Station, including science and research in support of dozens of research investigations.

Highlights of space station research that will be facilitated by investigations aboard this Cygnus include:

A test of the first integrated 3D printer and recycler to turn waste plastic materials into high-quality 3D-printer filament to create tools and materials, a key capability for future long-duration space missions beyond low-Earth orbit.

Dr. Allison Porter, flight missions manager at Tethers Unlimited Inc., with a mock-up of the Refabricator, a combination 3D printer and recycler, headed to the International Space Station aboard NG-10. In Porter’s hand is a roll of 3D printer filament. Credit: NASA TV

A lab-on-a-chip (a fully automated, multifunctional cell culture platform) investigation looking at skeletal muscle cells, which aims to better understand muscle growth and repair in microgravity.


Higher Orbits’ “Go For Launch” student program is supplying an experiment that focuses on the evaluation of self-healing materials in microgravity, the work of students Spencer Harris, George Tang, Ryan Ferzoco, Tarun Golla and Abby Maltese.

Image courtesy Higher Orbits.

An investigation into the complex process of cement solidification to explore how gravity levels like those on the Moon and Mars may potentially affect concrete hardening.


Research to develop a mathematical model for how an astronaut’s perception of motion, body position and distance to objects changes in space.


Included in the cargo are investigations that will enable U.S. National Laboratory research, which is managed by the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space. They include an investigation to evaluate growth of protein crystals implicated in Parkinson’s disease and astrophysics research to examine the formation of chondrules, some of the oldest material in the solar system.

Additional science highlights
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L-2 Forecast: 30-Percent Favorable

The latest Wallops range forecast for the scheduled launch of Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket on Nov. 15 puts weather at 30-percent favorable. At this time, the main weather concerns for a Thursday morning launch are thick clouds, disturbed weather and low cloud ceilings.

A Northrop Grumman Antares rocket carrying a Cygnus resupply spacecraft is seen on Pad-0A after being raised into a vertical position, Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2018, at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Northrop Grumman’s 10th contracted cargo resupply mission for NASA to the International Space Station will deliver about 7,500 pounds of science and research, crew supplies and vehicle hardware to the orbital laboratory and its crew. Launch is scheduled for Nov. 15 at 4:49 a.m. EST. Credit: NASA/Joel Kowsky

An area of low pressure will quickly develop on Wednesday over the Deep South, bringing rain showers to the Southeastern United States during the day. These showers will progress to the northeast on Wednesday night into early Thursday, likely arriving in the Wallops area by the time of the launch window.


Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket with Cygnus cargo spacecraft aboard was rolled out of the Horizontal Integration Facility and to the launch pad at Wallops late in the evening on Nov. 12, 2018, as seen in this time-lapse video. Credit: NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility/Patrick Black

After the launch window, rain will become heavy at times with increasing winds during the day on Thursday. Windy conditions will continue through Friday, with winds diminishing Friday night.

The Antares, with its International Space Station-bound Cygnus cargo spacecraft, is scheduled for liftoff at 4:49 a.m. EST on Nov. 15 from Pad 0A of Virginia Space’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport, located at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

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Antares Rocket Arrives at Launch Pad

Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket with Cygnus cargo spacecraft aboard is now at Pad 0A of Virginia Space’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport, located at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility.

The Antares was rolled out of the Horizontal Integration Facility at Wallops late in the evening on Nov. 12.

NASA commercial cargo provider Northrop Grumman is scheduled to launch its NG-10 resupply mission to the International Space Station at 4:49 a.m. EST Thursday, Nov. 15.

Credit: NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility/Patrick Black
Credit: NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility/Patrick Black
Credit: NASA/Joel Kowsky
Credit: NASA/Joel Kowsky
Credit: NASA/Joel Kowsky
Credit: NASA/Joel Kowsky
Credit: NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility/Patrick Black
Credit: NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility/Patrick Black

The NG-10 mission’s Cygnus spacecraft, dubbed the SS John Young, after NASA astronaut and U.S. Navy officer John Young, is loaded with 7,500 pounds of research, crew supplies and hardware.

Live coverage of the mission is scheduled to begin at 10:30 p.m. EST Nov. 14 on the Wallops video and audio Ustream sites. Launch coverage and commentary on NASA TV will begin at 4:15 a.m. EST Nov. 15.

How and where to view the launch
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Forecast for NG-10 Launch, 3 Days Out

The three-days-out launch range forecast has been issued for Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket with Cygnus cargo spacecraft on the company’s NG-10 resupply mission to the International Space Station, scheduled for 4:49 a.m EST on Nov. 15 from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.

An area of low pressure is expected to develop and bring rain showers to the Southeastern United States on Wednesday. These showers will quickly progress to the northeast on Wednesday night into early Thursday, drawing very close to Wallops by the launch window early Thursday morning. The timing of these showers will be key for determining weather suitability for launch Thursday.

NG-10 and NG-11 Antares rockets at Wallops HIF
Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket for its NG-10 commercial resupply mission to the International Space Station is seen on the left in the Horizontal Integration Facility at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore in this photo from Nov. 4, 2018. The mission’s Cygnus spacecraft is shown in the middle of the facility. The Antares NG-11 rocket scheduled to launch in spring 2019 is on the right. Credits: NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility/Patrick Black
The Cygnus spacecraft for the NG-10 mission, photographed in October at Wallops. Credits: NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility/Patrick Black

The next launch range forecast will be issued Nov. 13.

The NG-10 mission’s Cygnus spacecraft, dubbed the SS John Young, after NASA astronaut and U.S. Navy officer John Young, is loaded with 7,500 pounds of research, crew supplies and hardware.

Live coverage of the mission is scheduled to begin at 10:30 p.m. EST Nov. 14 on the Wallops video and audio Ustream sites. Launch coverage and commentary on NASA TV will begin at 4:15 a.m. EST Nov. 15.

How and where to view the launch
Full TV/streaming coverage details

How to View Nov. 15 NG-10 Antares Launch

NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility and Virginia’s Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport are set to support the launch of Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket, carrying the company’s Cygnus cargo spacecraft to the International Space Station at 4:49 a.m. EST, Nov. 15.

The launch may be visible, weather permitting, to residents up and down the East Coast of the United States.

launch viewing map for NG-10
The launch of Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, scheduled for 4:49 a.m. EST on Nov, 15, 2018, may be visible throughout the Mid-Atlantic, depending on local conditions. Credit: NASA/Stephan Wlodarczyk

When accessed from a smartphone browser, the Wallops Mission Status Center website can provide specific viewing information based on your location. Live coverage of the mission is scheduled to begin at 10:30 p.m. Nov. 14 on the Wallops video and audio Ustream sites.

Live coverage of the mission is scheduled to begin at 10:30 p.m. EST Nov. 14 on the Wallops video and audio Ustream sites. Launch coverage and commentary on NASA TV will begin at 4:15 a.m. EST Nov. 15.

Full coverage details

For local launch-viewers, the NASA Visitor Center at Wallops opens at 1 a.m. on launch day for public viewing. Additional locations for catching the launch are Robert Reed Park on Chincoteague Island or Beach Road spanning the area between Chincoteague and Assateague Islands. Assateague Island National Seashore/Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia will not be open for viewing the launch.

Visitors are reminded that alcohol, pets and firearms are not allowed on the NASA Visitor Center grounds.

Guidance from NASA on drone use for viewing Wallops launches
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Guidance for pilots (PDF)

Under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services contract, Cygnus will carry about 7,200 pounds of crew supplies and hardware to the space station, including science and research in support of dozens of research investigations.

Included in the cargo are investigations that will enable U.S. National Laboratory research, which is managed by the Center for the Advancement of Science in Space. They include a physical sciences investigation to evaluate a method for producing fiber optic cable in space and astrophysics research to examine the formation of chondrules, some of the oldest material in the solar system.