Thales Alenia Space, the joint venture between Thales (67%) and Leonardo-Finmeccanica (33%), announced the signing of a new contract with Orbital ATK at the Farnborough International Airshow to supply nine additional Pressurized Cargo Modules (PCM) for Cygnus resupply missions to the International Space Station (ISS) under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services contracts.

The Cygnus spacecraft consists of two basic components: the Service Module (SM) built by Orbital ATK and the Pressurized Cargo Module (PCM) developed by Thales Alenia Space.

The new configuration incorporates a number of upgrades as compared to the standard PCM utilized prior to this mission. These include a lighter and more efficient solution for storing and constraining the cargo inside the module, allowing for an increase in the mass and volume of cargo amount able to be transported to the orbiting laboratory.

Cygnus OA-6, S.S. Rick Husband un-docking from the ISS. Courtesy of NASA.

Cygnus OA-6, S.S. Rick Husband un-docking from the ISS. Courtesy of NASA.