Wednesday’s planned launch of an unmanned cargo spacecraft heading for the International Space Station will include materials from a Greenville-based company. Techshot Inc. says the NG-11 resupply mission is the first of what will be the company’s most active year in space operations.
Techshot says the spacecraft will include 12 plant growth devices the company developed for NASA as part of a partnership with Tupperware Brands Corp. (NYSE: TUP). The device known as PONDS, or Passive Orbital Nutrient Delivery System, was first launched to the ISS a year ago and is designed to help optimize the growth of plants such as lettuce and tomatoes, while reducing the amount of time required by astronauts to monitor and water them.
The company says it is also sending components of a centrifuge facility known as the MVP, or Multi-use Variable-gravity Platform. The components will be assembled along with others already on the ISS to create the second completed MVP unit on the station.
The NG-11 mission is scheduled to lift off at 4:46 p.m. from the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport at NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia. Techshot says it expects to launch equipment to the station on every American resupply mission this year.