Astronaut Megan McArthur Commands Robotic Arm to Capture Cygnus

The Cygnus space freighter approaches the space station following a day-and-a-half trip that began with a launch from Virginia.
The Cygnus space freighter approaches the space station following a day-and-a-half trip that began with a launch from Virginia. Credit: NASA TV

At 6:07 a.m. EDT, NASA astronaut Megan McArthur used the International Space Station’s robotic Canadarm2 to grapple the Northrop Grumman Cygnus spacecraft as ESA (European Space Agency) astronaut Thomas Pesquet monitored Cygnus systems during its approach. The spacecraft were flying about 260 miles above the Atlantic Ocean southwest of Lisbon, Portugal, at the time of capture.

Next, ground controllers will command the station’s arm to rotate and install Cygnus, dubbed the S.S. Ellison Onizuka, on the bottom of the station’s Unity module.

NASA Television coverage of installation will begin at 8 a.m., and installation of the Cygnus spacecraft to the space station is expected to be completed later this morning. Cygnus will remain at the orbiting laboratory for a three-month stay.

Learn more about space station activities by following the space station blog, @space_station and @ISS_Research on Twitter as well as the ISS Facebook and ISS Instagram accounts.

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