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Northrop Grumman Launches Spacecraft Delivering Snacks and Equipment To the ISS

Space.com has footage of Northrop Grumman’s successful launch of a spacecraft that’s bringing 7,500 pounds of supplies (as well as scientific equipment for experiments) to the astronauts on the International Space Station:
Those experiments include studies into bone loss from prolonged exposure to weightlessness, bacteria-targeting viruses that could lead to new medications, as well as some cowpeas to be grown as part of a space food experiment. Heidi Parris, NASA’s assistant program scientist for the International Space Station program’s science office, said those experiments aim to use the weightless environment on the station to learn more about how to live off Earth, including on the moon and Mars.

One novel experiment is Mochii, a small scanning electron microscope about the size of a breadbox that can help astronauts quickly identify the composition of small particles, such as debris or contamination in spacesuits. “Currently the ISS has a blind spot, in that we can’t perform this kind of analysis on orbit,” James Martinez, a materials scientist at NASA’s Johnson Space Center participating in the experiment… Another key experiment on Cygnus is the Spacecraft Fire Experiment IV, or Saffire-IV. As its name suggests, Saffire-IV is the fourth experiment to study how fire behaves in space

Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus is one of two private spacecraft (SpaceX’s Dragon capsules are the other) that currently haul cargo to the International Space Station for NASA. NG-13 is the 13th Cygnus mission to reach space for NASA by Northrop Grumman as part of the agency’s Commercial Resupply Services…
Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus NG-13 spacecraft will arrive at the International Space Station and be captured by a robotic arm on Tuesday, Feb. 18, at 4 a.m. EST (0900 GMT). NASA’s live webcast of the rendezvous will begin at 2:30 a.m. EST (0730 GMT) and run through spacecraft capture.

The spacecraft will also be bringing the astronauts candy, fresh fruit, and three different kinds of cheese wedge — cheddar, Parmesan and Fontina.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

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