The Antares rocket was carrying a Cygnus capsule loaded with 2.399kg of food and equipment for the International Space Station’s staff
An US Antares rocket carrying a Cygnus capsule towards the International Space Station exploded on Tuesday evening, a few seconds after launch, in the US state of Virginia, announced the TV station of the US Space Agency (NASA), quoted by Reuters and AFP.
The rocket, built by the Orbital Sciences Corporation was launched from the Wallops air base in Virginia, at 18.22 local time (22.22 GMT), and exploded a few seconds later because of currently unknown causes.
The Orbital Sciences Corporation is one of the two companies hired by NASA to carry capsules to the ISS. Tuesday’s flight was going to be the 3rd of the 8 contracted by the company, for which it receives 1.9 billion dollars from NASA.
Equipped with a new engine, more powerful, the Antares rocket launched on Tuesday was carrying a Cygnus capsule loaded with 2.399kg of food and equipment for the International Space Station’s staff.
The ISS, a research lab worth 100 billion dollars, is owned and managed by 15 countries, flying 418km above the Earth.