A Progress MS-16 cargo spaceship has been launched into orbit with the aim to deliver an additional nitrogen supply to the International Space Station (ISS) for oxygen regeneration and a repair kit to seal the air leak aboard the orbital outpost, TASS reports.
The Progress MS-16 has blasted off atop a Soyuz-2.1a carrier rocket towards the orbital outpost from the Baikonur spaceport. The launch is transmitted on the Roscosmos website.
The ship is set to dock the Pirs module at the ISS at 09:20 Moscow time. This is the first launch of a Russian cargo ship to the ISS in 2021.
The Progress MS-16 spacecraft is due to deliver 600 kg of the propellant to the ISS for refueling, 420 liters of the Rodnik system’s drinking water and 40.5 kg of compressed gases with additional nitrogen supplies, and also about 1,400 kg of various equipment and materials, including the resource equipment of onboard control and life support systems, kits for space experiments, medical control, sanitary and hygienic supplies, clothing items, standard food rations and fresh food products for the members of the current expedition, Roscosmos informed earlier.
Also, the spacecraft’s cargo compartment will carry a repair and recovery kit consisting of a set of reinforcing plates with an adhesive bond to temporarily seal the detected defects in the hull of the inter-section compartment of the Zvezda service module in the space station’s Russian segment, the Roscosmos press office said.
The launch was initially planned for December 2020, but it was postponed until 2021 due to a need for additional checks.