NASA today confirmed SpaceX’s next launch of International Space Station cargo from Cape Canaveral is scheduled for 2:31 p.m. Dec. 16. The mission is SpaceX’s, one of two U.S. companies under NASA contract to deliver cargo to the ISS.
Orbital Sciences Corp., however, is recovering from an October launch failure that saw its Antares rocket explode seconds after liftoff from Virginia’s Eastern Shore. Orbital is making plans to launch at least one Cygnus spacecraft on another company’s rocket — possibly from Florida — before the Antares can resume flights from Virginia in 2016 with a different rocket engine.
NASA has no near-term concerns about a shortage of supplies on the station. Three more crew members are due to launch from Kazakhstan to the orbiting research complex around 4 p.m. Eastern time on Sunday. … (Read more)