Antares Rocket Launches Cygnus NG-18 Cargo Ship And Bring NASA Wild Experiments

Antares Rocket Launches Cygnus NG-18 Cargo Ship And Bring NASA Wild Experiments
Antares Rocket Launches Cygnus NG-18 Cargo Ship And Bring NASA Wild Experiments

International Military - Antares rocket launched the cargo ship Cygnus NG-18 carrying 4 tons of supplies for astronauts on the International Space Station (ISS). The cargo ship made by Northrop Grumman is carrying a number of wild NASA experimental materials to be tested in space. An Antares rocket launches from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Space Port at NASA's Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island, Virginia, Monday, November 7, 2022.

The launch was delayed by 24 hours due to a fire alarm at Northrop Grumman's flight control center in Dulles, Virginia, forcing the evacuation of the building. About 8 minutes after launch, the cargo ship Cygnus NG-18, SS Sally Ride, reached orbit and unfurled its twin solar arrays. If all goes well, the Cygnus spacecraft will arrive at the ISS on Wednesday 9 November 2022 morning.

The cargo ship Cygnus will be captured by astronauts using a robotic arm and attached to an open berth. The cargo ship Cygnus NG-18 is carrying experimental ovarian cells from moving cows to the space station along with a series of other exciting science experiments. "This is a very exciting time for research aboard the International Space Station," said Heidi Parris, NASA's associate program scientist for the station program, at a pre-launch briefing Nov. 5 quoted from

The cargo ship Cygnus NG-18 carries 3,749 kilograms of supplies for the space station (ISS) crew. That includes 1,637 kg of crew equipment, 850 kg of science equipment, 66 kg of spacewalk equipment, 1,077 kg of vehicle hardware, and 78 kg of resource computers. Northrop Grumman said this flight was its heaviest cargo shipment and included an additional 20 kg of cargo due to load optimization. Scientists will research possible drug interventions or edible additives (nutraceuticals) to improve fertility outcomes in future studies.

Also sent to the space laboratory, a 3D printer known as the BioFabrication Facility. This tool is for printing some human knee cartilage (specifically, the meniscus), and a set of human heart cells. After space delivery, the device will print the new meniscus and study it in the laboratory to prepare for possible patient transplants in the future. Blood vessels and heart tissue will also be produced.

This tool plans to test drug efficacy in space on organoids or miniature versions of organs. The Antares rocket launch marked the first flight of a Northrop Grumman rocket using a Ukrainian-made first stage and a Russian rocket engine, since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022. Northrop Grumman said the company had enough components for the next two Antares missions.

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