An American commercial cargo spacecraft was named after Indian astronaut late Kalpana Chawla.
The spacecraft which was designed for the International Space Station.
Northrop Grumman, an American global aerospace and defence technology company, on the 10th of September, announced its next Cygnus capsule would also be named the “S.S. Kalpana Chawla.”
Kalpana Chawla was the first India born woman to enter space and contribute to spaceflight. She worked with NASA in the United States of America.
Kalpana Chawla died with her six crewmates aboard the space shuttle Columbia in 2003.
The Northrop Grumman, took to Twitter and said, “Today we honour Kalpana Chawla, who made history at @NASA as the first female astronaut of Indian descent. Her contributions to human spaceflight have had a lasting impact.” The Tweet also read, “Northrop Grumman is proud to name the NG-14 Cygnus spacecraft after former astronaut Kalpana Chawla. It is the company’s tradition to name each Cygnus after an individual who has played a pivotal role in human spaceflight.”
The company announced the same on their official website.
The announcement read, “Kalpana Chawla was selected in honour of her prominent place in history as the first woman of Indian descent to go to space.” It further read, “While Kalpana Chawla made the ultimate sacrifice in service to the space programme, her legacy lives on through her fellow astronauts and those she has inspired to follow in her footsteps.”
Speaking about the final research of Kalpana Chawla, the Northrope said, “Her final research conducted onboard Columbia helped us understand astronaut health and safety during spaceflight. Northrop Grumman is proud to celebrate the life of Kalpana Chawla and her dream of flying through the air and in space.”
The S.S. Kalpana Chawla capsule is scheduled to launch on the NG-14 mission atop a Northrop Grumman Antares rocket from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia on the 29th of September.
The spacecraft will arrive at and be attached to the space station two days later, the 1st of October.
Stay tuned for further updates.