MOSCOW, January 12 (RIA Novosti) – The Cygnus cargo spacecraft developed by private US company Orbital Sciences has arrived at the International Space Station on its first resupply mission, NASA has reported.
Expedition 38 astronauts captured the unmanned cargo spacecraft carrying nearly 2,800 pounds of supplies three days after its launch from Virginia on an Antares rocket.
Flight Engineers Mike Hopkins and Koichi Wakata used Canadarm2, the station’s 57-foot robotic arm, to reach out and grapple Cygnus. The docking was broadcast live by NASA.
The mission is the first out of eight planned Cygnus trips to the station under a $1.9 billion contract with NASA. Under the contract, almost 20 tons of cargo will be delivered up to 2016.
The Cygnus spacecraft, on its first test flight, launched on Sept. 18 on Orbital's Antares rocket from NASA’s Wallops Island Flight Facility in Virginia carrying 1,300 pounds (590 kilograms) of supplies to the ISS.