[SatNews] Orbital Sciences Corporation (NYSE: ORB) continues to prepare for next week's launch at the Horizontal Integration Facility (HIF) on Wallops Island, Virginia.
Yesterday, Antares was lifted onto the Transporter/Erector/Launcher (TEL). The TEL acts as a support structure as Antares is transported on the approximately one mile route from the HIF to Pad 0A. At the pad, hydraulic erection actuators rotate the TEL and the rocket to a vertical position, where the TEL functions as Antares' umbilical support structure. Click here for more images.
Later today, the Cygnus cargo spacecraft will be mated to the rocket. The majority of the cargo for the International Space Station is already loaded onto Cygnus. This week additional "late load" cargo will be installed in Cygnus, the hatch will be closed, and the cargo module will be pressurized prior to encapsulation in the 9.9 meter Antares payload fairing. Roll-out of Antares to the launch pad is currently scheduled for December 16.
Orbital Sciences website for further information: http://www.orbital.com/