Cygnus Spacecraft

Commercial Resupply Services  

Northrop Grumman developed the Cygnus advanced maneuvering spacecraft to provide cargo delivery services under a NASA Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) Space Act Agreement.
Northrop Grumman uses Cygnus to perform International Space Station resupply flights under the Commercial Resupply Service (CRS) contract. Including NG-11, Northrop Grumman will have delivered approximately 66,000 pounds (30,000 kilograms) of cargo to the International Space Station under the CRS-1 contract. Beginning this fall, Northrop Grumman will carry out a minimum of six initial cargo missions under NASA’s CRS-2 contract. The commercial resupply partnership with NASA is enhancing a robust American commercial space industry, freeing NASA to focus on developing the next-generation rocket and spacecraft that will enable humans to conduct deep space exploration missions.
The Cygnus system is a flight proven design incorporating elements drawn from Northrop Grumman and its partners’ existing, flight-proven spacecraft technologies. Cygnus consists of a service module and a pressurized cargo module. Cygnus is used to carry crew supplies, spare equipment and scientific experiments to the space station. The service module incorporates advanced avionics developed by Northrop Grumman and guidance and navigation components that allow for fully autonomous rendezvous with the space station. The avionics design fully meets all of the demanding NASA safety requirements imposed on human-rated vehicles. The pressurized cargo module is manufactured by Thales Alenia Space specifically for Cygnus.
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