|AIAA Congratulates Orbital Sciences Corporation on the Successful Launch of Their Antares Rocket
April 21, 2013 – Reston, Va. – The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and its Commercial Space Group, congratulates Orbital Sciences Corporation, Dulles, Va., an AIAA corporate member, on the successful launch of its Antares rocket from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, Wallops Island, Va.
The launch marks Orbital’s ongoing progress toward satisfying the requirements of NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services program, which challenges private industry to meet the logistics transportation needs of the International Space Station.
AIAA President Mike Griffin stated: “This afternoon, we witnessed the second major step in commercial space development. With the successful launch of Antares, the United States will soon have two vehicles capable of reaching the International Space Station. On behalf of the members and staff of AIAA, I congratulate Dave Thompson and the staff of Orbital Sciences Corporation on their success with Antares, and look forward to the future flight of Cygnus, and the further development of a thriving commercial space enterprise.”
During its flight, the two-stage Antares rocket will carry an 8,300-pound dummy cargo capsule, simulating Orbital’s Cygnus capsule, to an altitude of 160 miles above the Earth. A full test of the Antares rocket with the Cygnus capsule is expected later this summer.