WASHINGTON - NASA Television will provide live coverage in June of the launch and docking of the European Space Agency's (ESA) fourth Automated Transfer Vehicle cargo craft (ATV-4) to the International Space Station and the departure of a Russian Progress resupply ship from the orbiting laboratory.
Loaded with more than 7 tons of supplies for the space station crew, the 13-ton ATV-4 "Albert Einstein" spacecraft, named by ESA in honor of the 20th century theoretical physicist and icon of modern science, is scheduled to launch atop an Ariane 5 rocket from Kourou, French Guiana at 5:52 p.m. EDT, Wednesday, June 5. Launch coverage with commentary from NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston and ESA's launch provider, Arianespace, will begin at 5:15 p.m.
The ATV-4 is scheduled for a 10-day trip to the station. Docking to the aft port of the Russian Zvezda Service Module is scheduled for Saturday, June 15. NASA TV coverage of rendezvous and docking will begin at 8 a.m., ahead of the planned docking at 9:46 a.m.
Before the ATV-4 arrives at the station, the Russian ISS Progress 51 cargo spacecraft will undock from the Zvezda port at 9:53 a.m., Tuesday, June 11. NASA TV coverage of the undocking will begin at 9:30 a.m.
As the Progress cargo craft departs, the ship's external cameras will focus on navigational sensors on the Zvezda docking port to gather imagery and confirm the sensors were not damaged April 26 when Progress docked to the station with one of its navigational antennas folded against its side. Those sensors are required for the ATV-4 to dock properly June 15.
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