Dulles, Va. – Feb. 25, 2019 – Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE: NOC) announced that the company successfully completed its 10th cargo supply mission to the International Space Station under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services (CRS-1) contract.
During the mission, the “S.S. John Young” Cygnus met the needs of multiple customers throughout this flight to the International Space Station. The spacecraft removed more than 5,500 pounds (2,500 kilograms) of disposal cargo from the space station.
After departure, the extended mission included the deployment of three CubeSats via the NanoRacks External Cygnus Deployer at two different altitudes and two CubeSats from the Slingshot CubeSat Deployer System. Slingshot, a new commercial customer for Cygnus, is a flexible platform that can fly hosted payloads and CubeSats. The spacecraft also operated a commercial powered payload for another new customer, UbiquitiLink, Inc. These innovative uses of Cygnus beyond the primary mission demonstrate expanded commercial opportunities enabled by partnerships built through the space station.
“It was a flawless mission for Cygnus that further demonstrated its ability to operate as an in-orbit science platform and launch pad for deployment of commercial CubeSats on extended missions,” said Frank DeMauro, vice president and general manager, space systems, Northrop Grumman. “Now, we turn our attention to the next launch this spring where Cygnus will fly on an extended duration mission to further demonstrate its abilities as in-orbit test platform. These capabilities will showcase Cygnus as an evolving space vehicle that can build on the positive impact of the space station to grow new commercial partnerships.”
The mission officially concluded on Feb. 25 at 4:05 a.m. EST when Cygnus performed a safe, destructive re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere over the Pacific Ocean east of New Zealand. The mission began Nov. 17, 2018, when Cygnus launched aboard a Northrop Grumman Antares™ rocket from NASA Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Upon arrival at the orbiting laboratory, Cygnus delivered approximately 7,400 pounds (3,350 kilograms) of cargo, supplies and scientific experiments to the astronauts. It remained docked for 81 days at the orbiting laboratory before departing the space station on Feb. 8.
The next Cygnus launch, known as the NG-11 mission, is currently scheduled in mid-April. This will be the final mission under Northrop Grumman’s CRS-1 contract with NASA before starting the CRS-2 contract missions in the fall of 2019.
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