Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus supply ship is grappled by the Canadian-built robotic arm at the International Spaceport Station. Credit: NASA TV/ Spaceflight Now

A Northrop Grumman Cygnus cargo ship came to the International Space Station on Monday, delivering nearly 4 lots of materials and experiments to the research laboratory and its crew, consisting of a $23 million titanium toilet and a high-definition virtual truth camera prepared for use on a future spacewalk.

Capping an automated laser-guided rendezvous series, the Cygnus freight truck moved within 40 feet (12 meters) of the spaceport station early Monday, close enough for the lab’s Canadian-built robotic arm to connect and grapple it.

NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy, assisted by Russian cosmonaut Ivan Vagner, took control of the 58- foot-long (177- meter) robotic arm to record the Cygnus spacecraft at 5: 32 a.m. EDT (0932 GMT) Monday.

Northrop Grumman named the Cygnus supply ship the “S.S. Kalpana Chawla” in honor of the very first woman of Indian descent to fly into space. Chawla flew on two space shuttle bus missions, and she passed away with her 6 crewmates on the space shuttle Columbia in 2003.

” In the name of area expedition, all have actually given some, some have actually given all,” Cassidy stated after catching the Cygnus spacecraft Monday. “It’s an honor to welcome the excellent ship Kalpana Chawla. Welcome aboard the International Spaceport Station, KC.”

NASA astronaut Chris Cassidy has recorded the Cygnus cargo freighter using the space station’s Canadian-built robotic arm.

This Cygnus is named for astronaut Kalpana Chawla, who passed away with six crewmates on the area shuttle bus Columbia in 2003.

— Spaceflight Now (@SpaceflightNow) October 5, 2020

Ground controllers at the Johnson Space Center in Houston took control of the robotic arm later Monday early morning to attach the Cygnus spacecraft to a berthing port on the space station’s Unity module, where it will remain for around two months.

Cassidy and his crewmates will open hatches causing the S.S. Kalpana Chawla’s pressurized freight compartment to begin unpacking the products and experiments inside.

The arrival of the S.S. Kalpana Chawla supply ship Monday marked the 14 th shipment of cargo to the spaceport station by a Cygnus spacecraft because 2013.

The Cygnus freight objective launched Friday night from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport aboard an Antares rocket, following delays previously in the week caused by bad weather condition and a ground software application problem.

The S.S. Kalpana Chawla is loaded with 7,829 pounds (3,551 kgs) of materials and experiments heading to the International Spaceport Station. Here’s a breakdown of the freight manifest offered by NASA:

  • 2,712 pounds (1,230 kgs) of automobile hardware
  • 2,683 pounds (1,217 kgs) of clinical investigations
  • 1,874 pounds (850 kilograms) of crew products
  • 333 pounds (151 kilograms) of spacewalk equipment
  • 156 pounds (71 kgs) of computer resources

The Cygnus supply ship will stay berthed Unity module up until mid-December, when it will be launched by the station’s robotic arm. The automated cargo provider, filled with trash after its departure from the station, will carry out an in-flight combustion experiment before returning to the environment and burning up over the South Pacific Ocean to end its mission.

The fresh food loaded inside the S.S. Kalpana Chawla supply ship consists of prosciutto, chorizo, salami, summer season sausage, brie, smoked gouda, smoked provolone, and fruits and vegetables.

Amongst clothing and other crew arrangements, the Cygnus objective will provide an upgraded toilet to the space station, enabling astronauts to evaluate its performance prior to a comparable commode flies on the Orion team pill to the moon.

The new toilet, or Universal Waste Management System in NASA-speak, is approximately the size of a camper commode. It’s about 65 percent smaller and 40 percent lighter than the toilet presently on the spaceport station, according to Melissa McKinley, logistics reduction supervisor for the firm’s innovative expedition systems department.

NASA partnered with Collins Aerospace to develop the new toilet, which authorities stated is better suited for female team members than the existing commode on the space station. Engineers made parts of the toilet out of titanium to endure acid used to pre-treat urine prior to the fluid is recycled back into drinking water for the astronauts, stated Jim Fuller, the toilet’s project supervisor at Collins Aerospace.

” On Earth, we have gravity that helps pull the feces and urine far from our body and into the toilet,” Fuller stated. “In area, where we have microgravity, we don’t have that high-end. The double fan separator actually creates the intention force by producing a strong air flow that helps pull the urine and feces away from the body.

” When the astronauts need to ‘go,’ we wish to allow them to boldly go,” Fuller said.

NASA astronaut Kate Rubins, in blue, gets a rundown on the brand-new space station toilet earlier this year. Credit: NASA

Designers desired the new toilet to be easier to use for ladies flying on the spaceport station,

” The funnel style was completely re-contoured to better accommodate the female anatomy,” McKinley stated. “And particularly, this is a concern when the crew members are trying to do ‘double ops,’ when they’re they’re doing both defecation and urination at the same time, simply the positioning of all of that simultaneously … Trying to make that more appropriate for female use was a big chauffeur.”

There’s also a virtual truth electronic camera flying to the space station that will capture images of a future spacewalk.

The cosmetics company Estée Lauder is likewise flying 10 bottles of its “Advanced Night Repair work” serum to the space station, where the bottles will be photographed with Earth as a background. Estée Lauder says it will utilize the images in social networks and marketing projects, and after that plans to auction the serum returned to Earth from the space station, with the proceeds going to charity.

It becomes part of a new NASA program that devotes 5 percent of space station freight capability and team time to commercial marketing activities. Estée Lauder will compensate NASA around $128,000 for the spaceport station resources used in the night serum marketing effort, according to Phil McAlister, NASA’s director of industrial spaceflight development.

Northrop Grumman’s Cygnus spacecraft shares space station resupply responsibilities with SpaceX’s Dragon capsule, the Russian Development resupply freighter, and Japanese cargo objectives.

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Follow Stephen Clark on Twitter: @StephenClark1

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