Sunday, February 21, 2016

4th Cygnus Cargo Ship Undocks, Burns Up

Farewell to the "Deke Slayton II." Credit NASA TV.
On Friday Feb. 19, Orbital ATK's 4th Cygnus resupply mission ended when the "Deke Slayton II" undocked from the ISS and maneuvered away from the station. It had arrived in December 2015 with supplies and experiments for the station, blasting off using an Atlas V rocket. Orbital ATK's own rocket, the Antares, is being redesigned following a catastrophic explosion the year before. 
Fiery re-entry of a Cygnus spacecraft.
Once the spacecraft had been carefully maneuvered away from the station, engineers sent commands that propelled the craft into a de-orbit burn high over the Pacific Ocean. Since the craft is not designed for re-use, it broke apart and burned up safely away from habitable areas.

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