Astro Pi: Successful Launch

7 December 2015

Launch of Cygnus OA-4 Return to Flight on Atlas V Rocket

An Atlas V rocket in the 401 configuration has successfully launched the unmanned Cygnus OA-4 spacecraft full of cargo for the International Space Station today, December 6th 2015 at 21:44 UTC. This return to flight mission since the Antares rocket failure in October 2014 carries an enhanced Cygnus spacecraft with a larger cargo volume and new solar arrays, The craft will arrive at the International Space Station on Wednesday.

On Sunday 6th December at 21:44 GMT, Cygnus was successfully launched on an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canaveral in Florida. On board are the Raspberry Pis containing the competition-winning programs for Tim Peake to run when he reaches the ISS himself. It was a tense night, as the launch had been postponed several times since Thursday 3rd December, due to poor weather conditions. However, everything was ‘Go’ last night, and we were treated to some excellent footage as Atlas made its way into space and successfully performed a separation. Watch the launch replay above.

Tim Peake on Twitter

2 of these cool looking @astro_pi computers are now in space en route to #ISS with winning schoolkids code on them!


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