13 August 2014
The ESA’s Georges Lemaitre Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV), the last spacecraft in the series, successfully docked at the ISS on Tuesday. This ATV spacecraft is expected to make history during its atmospheric reentry by gathering important data on the optimal angle to be used to de-orbit the ISS safely. The technology in the ATV will also be transferred to NASA’s Orion spacecraft. Reportedly, the choice to end the ATV program with just five spacecraft is a subject of debate in Europe because of how useful the vehicle would have been to de-orbit the ISS in the future. The ESA made the choice because it wants to focus on research and development instead of just building the same hardware, even for vehicles as sophisticated as ATV. (Image Credit: NASA)
More Info > (AFP)
More Info > (Space News)