Orbital ATK’s Cygnus spacecraft, which launched on an Orbital ATK Antares rocket from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on October 17, delivered its cargo load to the International Space Station on Sunday.
Once Cygnus was in close proximity to the station, crew members grappled Cygnus with the station’s robotic arm at 7:28 a.m. (EDT). The spacecraft was then guided to its berthing port on the bottom of the Unity module of the station where installation concluded at 10:53 a.m. (EDT).
The Cygnus mission was the first launch to the ISS from Wallops Island since October 2014, when an Antares rocket exploded just six seconds after launching from Launch Pad – 0A at Wallops.
Cygnus arrived at the station with 5,300 pounds (2,400 kilograms) of cargo, including food, clothing, crew supplies, spare parts, packaging materials, laboratory equipment and scientific experiments.
The crew will open the Cygnus hatch and make initial ingress into its cargo module to begin the process of unloading the pressurized cargo. Cygnus will remain berthed at the station for approximately one month before departing with close to 4,000 pounds (1,800 kilograms) of disposable cargo.
The Cygnus ship will stay connected to the ISS until November 18 before leaving with close to 4,000 pounds of disposable cargo.,
Cygnus also carries the Saffire II payload experiment to study combustion behavior in microgravity. In addition, a NanoRack deployer will release Spire Cubesats used for weather forecasting. These secondary payload operations will be conducted after Cygnus departs the space station.