JAXA - HB-II Transfer Vehicle (HTV-7) Mission patch.
September 22, 2018
Image above: Japan’s H-IIB rocket with the HTV-7 resupply ship on top blasts off at 1:52 p.m. EDT on Friday, Sept. 22 (2:52 a.m. Sept. 23 Japan standard time) from the Tanegashima Space Center. Image Credits: JAXA/NASA.
The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)’s H-IIB rocket launched at 1:52 p.m. EDT on Friday, Sept. 22 (2:52 a.m. Sept. 23 Japan standard time) from the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan. At the time of launch, the space station was 254 miles over the southwest Pacific, west of Chile.
HTV-7 launched by H-IIB F7
A little more than 15 minutes after launch, the unpiloted H-II Transfer Vehicle-7 (HTV-7) cargo spacecraft successfully separated from the rocket and began its four-and-a-half rendezvous with the International Space Station.
On Thursday, Sept. 27, the HTV-7 will approach the station from below and slowly inch its way toward the orbiting laboratory. Expedition 56 Commander Drew Feustel and Flight Engineer Serena Auñón-Chancellor of NASA will operate the station’s Canadarm2 robotic arm to capture the spacecraft as it approaches. Flight Engineer Alexander Gerst of ESA (European Space Agency) will monitor HTV-7 systems during its approach. Robotic ground controllers will then install it on the Earth-facing side of the Harmony module, where it will remain for several weeks.
Image above: The Japanese HTV-6 cargo vehicle is seen during final approach to the International Space Station before it is captured by the remote Canadarm 2. HTV-6 launched from the Tanegashima Space Center in southern Japan on Friday, Dec. 9, and arrived at the station on Tuesday, Dec. 13. The vehicle was loaded with more than 4.5 tons of supplies, water, spare parts and experiment hardware. Image Credit: NASA.
NASA TV coverage of the Sept. 27 rendezvous and grapple will begin at 6:30 a.m. ET. Capture is scheduled for approximately 8:00 a.m. After a break, NASA TV coverage will resume at 10:30 a.m. for spacecraft installation to the space station’s Harmony module.
In addition to new hardware to upgrade the station’s electrical power system, the HTV-7 is carrying a new sample holder for the Electrostatic Levitation Furnace (JAXA-ELF), a protein crystal growth experiment at low temperatures (JAXA LT PCG), an investigation that looks at the effect of microgravity on bone marrow (MARROW), a Life Sciences Glovebox, and additional EXPRESS Racks.
JAXA Press Release: http://global.jaxa.jp/news/2018/#news12912
H-II Transfer Vehicle-7 (HTV-7): https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/structure/elements/htv.html
Electrostatic Levitation Furnace (JAXA-ELF): https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/experiments/1999.html
JAXA LT PCG: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/experiments/2297.html
Life Sciences Glovebox: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/experiments/2723.html
EXPRESS Racks: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/experiments/608.html
NASA TV: https://www.nasa.gov/nasatv
Space Station Research and Technology: https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/research/index.html
International Space Station (ISS): https://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/station/main/index.html
Images (mentioned), Video, Text, Credits: NASA/Mark Garcia/JAXA/NASA TV/SciNews.
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