Back in play: Antares 230 launches Cygnus freighter to the ISS on long awaited return (Updated)

by | Oct 24, 2016 | commercial launch services, International Space Station, Launches, NASA, Satellites, Seradata News, space station | 0 comments

At 2345 GMT on 17 October an Antares 230  rocket lifted off from Wallops Flight Facility, Wallops Island, Virginia, carrying the Cygnus OA-5 commercial resupply mission for the International Space Station (ISS) into orbit. This flight marks the return-to-flight of the Antares vehicle, which had to be redesigned after suffering an engine failure during the launch of Cygnus OA-3 in October 2014. For the 200 series onwards, Antares has been refitted with two Russian RD-181 first stage engines, supplied by NPO Energomash, replacing the AJ-26 (refurbished NK-33) engines from Aerojet on the Antares 100 series. The rocket also flies with a “new” Castor 30XL upper stage which, while flown on the previous Antares launch, never had a chance to ignite given its failure shortly after lift off.

This Cygnus mission is named in honour of late astronaut, Alan Poindexter, and is carrying around 2,400 kg of supplies to the ISS. Additionally, the Cygnus freighter is fitted with the Saffire II experiment, the second in a series testing combustion in microgravity, and a NanoRack deployer that will release several Lemur cubesats for the weather-data company, Spire Global.

Update 24 October: After waiting for the Soyuz craft carrying Expedition 49/50 to dock with the ISS, the Cygnus OA-5 freighter was successfully berthed with the station five days after lift-off.

At 1128 GMT, 23 October, the freighter was confirmed to be in the grip of the Canadian-built, Canadarm2 robotic arm, under the control of US astronaut Kate Rubins and Japanese astronaut Takuya Onishi. It was fully berthed with the ISS at 1453 GMT. The freighter is expected to stay with the station until around 18 November, when it will commence the second part of its mission – conducting the Saffire II experiment and launching several Spire cubesats – before re-entering the Earth’s atmosphere.

 

About Seradata

Seradata produce the renowned SpaceTrak Launch & Satellite Database. Trusted by 100 of the world’s leading Space organisations, SpaceTrak is a fully queryable database used for market analysis, failure/risk assessment, spectrum analysis and space situational awareness (SSA).

For more information go to www.seradata.com/spacetrak

Related Articles

Northrop Grumman completes acquisition of Orbital ATK

On 6 June, Northrop Grumman's proposed acquisition of fellow aerospace manufacturer Orbital ATK was approved by the US FTC (Federal Read more

Antares launches CYGNUS OA-9 freighter on way to ISS (Updated)

At 0844 GMT, on 21 May, an Orbital ATK Antares rocket lifted-off from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport, Virginia, carrying the Read more

Orbital ATK’s OmegA rocket comes together with selection of RL-10C for upper stage

Orbital ATK's plans to effectively join the battle for military and government launches using a new solid rocket has come Read more

SATELLITE 2018: Manufacturers look forward to higher LEO demands following GEO slump

One session at the SATELLITE 2018 conference was dedicated to the major global satellite manufacturers: Boeing, Maxar SSL, Orbital ATK, Thales Read more

SATELLITE 2018: Orbital ATK and SpaceLogistics introduce next-generation of in-orbit servicing vehicles

At the "Reuse, Revitalize and Repurpose" forum at the SATELLITE 2018 conference, Orbital ATK along with their dedicated, in-orbit servicing Read more

Intelsat gives Galaxy 30 construction order to Orbital ATK and an Ariane 5 launch order for it and MEV-2 as well an extra launch booking

As part of its fleet replacement plans, the international satellite operator Intelsat has ordered the construction of the Intelsat 30 communications Read more

Orbital ATK to build second MEV for satellite mission extension after Intelsat commits to second mission

Following on from a second "order" to lease an MEV (Mission Extension Vehicle) for five years, Orbital ATK has begun Read more

Orbital ATK Antares 230 launches the CYGNUS OA-8 cargo craft to the ISS

An Antares 230 medium launch vehicle has carried the Cygnus OA-8 (Gene Cernan) resupply mission to Low Earth Orbit (LEO) Read more

Categories

Archives

Tags