NASA Invites Media to Northrop Grumman’s February Space Station Launch
Media accreditation is open for the launch from Virginia of Northrop Grumman’s 13th commercial resupply services mission to deliver NASA science investigations, supplies and equipment to the International Space Station.
Northrop Grumman is targeting liftoff of its Antares rocket and Cygnus spacecraft for 5:39 p.m. EST Feb. 9 from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport’s Pad-0A at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on Wallops Island.
To cover the prelaunch and launch activities at Wallops, international media without U.S. citizenship must apply for credentials by Monday, Jan. 13. The application deadline for media who are U.S. citizens is Monday, Feb. 3.
All accreditation requests must be sent to Keith Koehler at email@example.com.
Each resupply mission to the station delivers scientific investigations in the areas of biology and biotechnology, Earth and space science, physical sciences, and technology development and demonstrations.
Highlights of space station research facilitated by research aboard this Cygnus mission include:
- The Mobile SpaceLab, a tissue and cell culturing facility that launches and returns on space station resupply spacecraft to offer researchers a quick-turnaround, high-throughput platform that can perform a biology experiment without the need for crew operations for as long as a month.
- Plant Habitat-02, which will cultivate radishes in the Advanced Plant Habitat facility as a model plant that is nutritious and edible. The ability to reliably grow nutritionally-valuable food crops in space which will be critical for NASA’s human exploration of the Moon and Mars.
- The Spacecraft Fire Experiment-IV (Saffire-IV) investigation, which will use the Cygnus resupply vehicle after it leaves the space station to examine the development and growth of a fire in different materials and environmental conditions. Understanding how fires spread in space is vital for developing flame-resistant materials and fire prevention measures.
Cargo resupply from U.S. companies ensures a national capability to deliver critical science research to the space station, significantly increasing NASA's ability to conduct new investigations at the only laboratory in space.