Northrop Grumman’s Antares rocket blasted off Wednesday afternoon from Wallops Island. Virginia Tech students got to watch as one of the school’s satellites, along with two satellites from other Virginia universities, was launched into space. Now it’s headed to the International Space Station.
For the past several years, a team of 50 undergraduate students from the College of Engineering and the College of Science developed Virginia Tech’s CubeSat at the Center for Space Science and Engineering Research.
The initiative began in June 2016 as part of the Virginia CubeSat Constellation, a collaborative effort between the Virginia Space Grant Consortium and four of its member universities: Virginia Tech, Old Dominion University, University of Virginia, and Hampton University.
The 7,600-pound (3,450-kilogram) load on the rocket also includes three free-flying robots to be tested as astronaut helpers, 40 black lab mice and 63 tiny student-research satellites.