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2nd Private Company Rockets Toward Space Station

International Space Station
Photo by NASA via Getty Images

A Virginia company is on its way to the International Space Station, doubling the number of commercial suppliers.

Orbital Sciences Corp. launched its first-ever cargo ship Wednesday morning from Virginia. The capsule, named Cygnus, is due at the space station on Sunday, following four days of testing.

It’s only the second private business to attempt a shipment like this. The California-based SpaceX company has been delivering station cargo for more than a year under a NASA contract.

The Cygnus capsule contains 1,300 pounds of food, clothing and goodies for the astronauts — nothing too valuable given this is a test flight.

Orbital Sciences’ unmanned Antares rocket blasted off from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility. It’s the second major launch from Wallops this month. A NASA moonshot occurred Sept. 6.


Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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