Video: Normally, space and fire don’t mix well, but NASA is deliberately going to cause a “large fire” inside a Cygnus resupply vessel just to see what happens. The rocket’s launching tonight, and as always, you can watch live.
The first part of Cygnus’s mission should hopefully not involve any fire at all: the rocket will rendezvous with the ISS, unloading supplies and new experiments. Once it’s done that, the craft will launch five tiny CubeSats, then reposition in a lower orbit away from the ISS and gently combust. The fire is supposed to be a metre in length, and the hope is that watching a fire in microgravity, inside a spaceship, will give NASA useful insights for future missions.
The launch window opens at 2:05pm AEDT (11:05pm Eastern), and assuming that nothing goes wrong, Cygnus will rendezvous with the ISS at 9:00pm AEDT Saturday night (6:00am Eastern).