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Cygnus OA-6



Orbital and NASA's Johnson Space Center are jointly developing a new space transportation system in a three-year cooperative program to support the International Space Station (ISS). The COTS program will involve full-scale development and flight demonstration of a commercial cargo delivery system. The COTS system will consist of:

Antares, a new medium-class launch vehicle being developed by Orbital Cygnus, an advanced maneuvering spacecraft, and Several interchangeable modules for pressurized and unpressurized cargo

The Spacecraft consists of a Service Module (SM), which can be used with either a Pressurized Cargo Module (PCM) or an Unpressurized Cargo Module (UCM) (now cancelled). The PCM is based on the MPLM-Logistics-Module, while the UCM is based on the Express Cargo Carrier, which were both used with the Shuttle. The PCM is manufactured by Thales-Alenia.

The enhanced Cygnus spacecraft will be capable of delivering up to 2,700 kg of pressurized cargo to the ISS. It can also carry an external CubeSat dispenser (first flown on OA-6) and can host internal modules with experiments to be conducted in free flight after the ISS mission.

Alternate Names

  • 41393
  • CygnusOA6

Facts in Brief

Launch Date: 2016-03-23
Launch Vehicle: Atlas V 401
Launch Site: Cape Canaveral, United States

Funding Agency

  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration (United States)


  • Other

Additional Information

Questions and comments about this spacecraft can be directed to: Coordinated Request and User Support Office

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