ESA’s (European Space Agency) fifth and final Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) undocked from the International Space Station’s aft port of the Zvezda service module at 8:42 a.m. EST.
ATV-5 will move to a safe distance from the space station for its deorbit and destructive entry in the Earth’s atmosphere Sunday.
This is the last in a series of European resupply spacecraft that began servicing the space station in the spring of 2008. In all, the ATVs delivered approximately 34 tons of supplies to the complex while docked to the station of 776 days. ESA is applying its technology and knowledge from the cargo ship to develop the service module for NASA’s Orion spacecraft.