Chocolate coming on next space station delivery (Update)

Sep 16, 2013 by Marcia Dunn
An unmanned Antares rocket sits on the launch pad at Wallops Island, Va. in an undated photo provided by NASA. It's due to lift off Wednesday, Sept. 17, 2013 on a test flight of a new cargo ship, called Cygnus, and will deliver goods to the International Space Station. NASA hired Orbital Sciences Corp., the maker of this rocket and cargo ship, to help keep the space station stockpiled. The other company in this new commercial arena is SpaceX. (AP Photo/NASA)

A U.S. company makes its debut this week as a space station delivery service, and the lone American aboard the orbiting lab is counting on a fresh stash of chocolate.

In an interview Monday with The Associated Press, NASA astronaut Karen Nyberg said she can't wait for this weekend's arrival of a new cargo ship named Cygnus. It will be the first shipment by Orbital Sciences Corp. to the International Space Station.

"You know that there's something packed away in that vehicle, something special for you ... We're human beings and we get very excited about the packages from home and some of the treats that we might get," said Nyberg.

Orbital Sciences is scheduled to launch an unmanned Antares rocket containing Cygnus on Wednesday morning

NASA is paying Orbital Sciences and the California-based SpaceX company to keep the space station well stocked now that the space shuttle era has ended.

Orbital Sciences conducted a practice Antares launch in April with a mock payload. This will be its first space station run, coming more than a year after the initial SpaceX delivery.

Because this is considered a test flight, the Cygnus will carry up mostly food and other nonessential items. That suits Nyberg and her two male crewmates—an Italian and a Russian. They have been in orbit since the end of May, with two more months to go. Three more residents arrive later next week.

Given a Wednesday launch, the Cygnus should arrive at the space station on Sunday. Unlike the SpaceX Earth-returning Dragon, it will be filled with trash and, once cut loose, burn up during descent.

Russia, Europe and Japan also send up supplies.

Explore further: New project aims to establish a human colony on Mars

More information: NASA: www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/main/index.html
Orbital Sciences Corp.: www.orbital.com/

Related Stories

East Coast test rocket launch scrubbed (Update 2)

Apr 17, 2013

A private company contracted by the U.S. space agency to make supply runs to the International Space Station scrubbed a Wednesday test launch of an unmanned rocket, saying cables linked to the rocket's second ...

American resupply missions to the space station progressing

Oct 02, 2012

(Phys.org)—Orbital Sciences Corporation Monday rolled the first stage of its Antares rocket to the launch pad of the nation's newest spaceport - the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at Wallops Island, Va. - while in Florida, ...

Recommended for you

New project aims to establish a human colony on Mars

3 hours ago

MarsPolar, a newly started international venture is setting its sights on the Red Planet. The project consisting of specialists from Russia, United Arab Emirates, Poland, U.S. and Ukraine has come up with a bol ...

Ceres bright spots sharpen but questions remain

May 25, 2015

The latest views of Ceres' enigmatic white spots are sharper and clearer, but it's obvious that Dawn will have to descend much lower before we'll see crucial details hidden in this overexposed splatter of ...

Rosetta's view of a comet's "great divide"

May 25, 2015

The latest image to be revealed of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko comes from October 27, 2014, before the Philae lander even departed for its surface. Above we get a view of a dramatically-shadowed cliff ...

How long will our spacecraft survive?

May 25, 2015

There are many hazards out there, eager to disrupt and dismantle the mighty machines we send out into space. How long can they survive to perform their important missions?

Why roundworms are ideal for space studies

May 25, 2015

Humans have long been fascinated by the cosmos. Ancient cave paintings show that we've been thinking about space for much of the history of our species. The popularity of recent sci-fi movies suggest that ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.