Two days after a Russian Soyuz spacecraft ferried two fresh organisation members to the International Space Station, a blurb load ship loaded with some 7,600 pounds of reserve and apparatus finished its own event early Saturday and was pulled in for berthing by the lab’s robot arm.
Launched Tuesday from Cape Canaveral, the Orbital ATK Cygnus load ship, named in respect of the late wanderer John Glenn, pulled up to within 40 feet of the hire and then stood by while Expedition 51 commander Peggy Whitson and European Space Agency wanderer Thomas Pesquet, handling the Canadian arm, sealed onto the spacecraft.
Flight controllers at the Johnson Space Center in Houston then took over arm operations and pulled the Cygnus in for berthing at the Earth-facing pier of the station’s executive Unity module.
“The organisation of Expedition 51 would like to honour all the teams at NASA, Orbital ATK and the contractors for a flawless load delivery mission,” Pesquet radioed after grappling the load ship.
“We’re very unapproachable to acquire on house the S.S. John Glenn. The some-more than 3 tons of pressurized load in the Cygnus booster will be put to good use to continue the goal of research, scrutiny and discovery.”
The attainment of the supply ship capped a bustling week at the space station, following the attainment of the Soyuz MS-04 organisation packet ship Thursday carrying commander Fyodor Yurchikhin and moody operative Jack Fischer. They assimilated Whitson, Pesquet and Soyuz MS-03 commander Oleg Novitskiy, 10 days after 3 other hire fliers returned to Earth.
On Monday, around 1:27 a.m., Whitson will turn America’s many gifted astronaut, passing Jeff Williams’ accumulative symbol of 534 days in space during his 3 space fights. President Trump and daughter Ivanka devise a congratulatory call to the hire after Monday morning.
On May 12, Whitson and Fischer will venture outward for a spacewalk to reinstate an outmost computer, install a high-definition camera on the station’s energy truss, insert micrometeoroid helmet to a advancing pier and help engineers troubleshoot cooling issues with a high-energy production experiment.
Whitson is already America’s many gifted womanlike spacewalker, with 53 hours 22 mins of EVA time during eight prior excursions. After her ninth spacewalk, she will pierce up to No. 3 in the world, behind cosmonaut Anatoly Solovyev and former wanderer Mike Lopez-Alegria.
Novitskiy and Pesquet devise to return to Earth Jun 2 to close out a 196-day mission. The next day, a SpaceX Dragon load ship is approaching to arrive, followed by a Russian Progress freighter Jun 14. Three fresh organisation members — Soyuz MS-05 commander Sergey Ryazanskiy, Randy Bresnik and European wanderer Paolo Nespoli — will arrive Jul 28.
Whitson launched to the hire with Novitskiy and Pesquet last November, but she will sojourn aboard for an extended goal when they skip in June, returning to Earth Sept. 3 with Yurchikhin and Fischer.