Satnews Daily
December 31st, -0001

Thales Alenia Space... Cygnus Cargo Considerations (Spacecraft)

Thales Alenia Space' Pressurized Cargo Module for Cygnus
[SatNews] This important module has made its way from Italy to Virginia...

Thales Alenia Space announced has delivered to Orbital Sciences Corporation (NYSE: ORB) its first Pressurized Cargo Module (PCM) developed to transport cargo to the International Space Station. This first PCM will be used for the Cygnus™ demonstration mission, under NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) research and development initiative with Orbital. The module was shipped from the Thales Alenia Space plant in Turin, Italy to NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia, where Orbital will integrate it with the Cygnus service module to produce the complete Cygnus spacecraft. The first mission is currently scheduled for December 2011, using Orbital’s Taurus® II launcher.
Following the demonstration flight, Thales Alenia Space will provide Orbital with eight more PCM units to be used for ISS cargo transport, in order to deliver crew supplies, spare parts and scientific experiments to the Station under Orbital’s Commercial Resupply Service (CRS) contract with NASA. The first PCM will be followed by three more units in “standard” configuration, capable of transporting up to 2,000 kg of cargo each, along with five “enhanced” configuration units, boosting payload capacity to 2,700 kg. The Cygnus spacecraft comprises a Service Module (SM) built by Orbital, and a Pressurized Cargo Module (PCM) developed by Thales Alenia Space.