Orbital Cygnus Space Station

The Cygnus spacecraft is a single-use American automated cargo spacecraft developed by Orbital Sciences and now built and launched by Northrop Grumman as part of NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) developmental program. It is launched by Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket or ULA’s Atlas V and is designed to transport supplies to the International Space Station (ISS) following the retirement of the American Space Shuttle. Since August 2000 ISS resupply missions have been regularly flown by the Russian Progress spacecraft, as well as by the European Automated Transfer Vehicle, and the Japanese H-II Transfer Vehicle. With the Cygnus spacecraft and the SpaceX Dragon, NASA seeks to increase its partnerships with domestic commercial aviation and aeronautics industry.