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NASA to launch rocket and provide public with virtual reality experience
NASA has launched a rocket packed with food and supplies for the astronauts living at the International Space Station (ISS). The rocket is scheduled to take-off on Tuesday from a NASA launch pad.

The unmanned rocket named as Cygnus cargo ship has been nestled on top of an Atlas V rocket. It has been scheduled for take off during a 30-minute launch window beginning at 11:11 am from Cape Canaveral, Florida.

This will be Orbital ATK's, the cargo ship operating the rocket, seventh mission to space. The company has a $1.9 billion contract with NASA to ferry supplies to the orbiting outpost.

The spacecraft scheduled for launch is loaded with 3,459 kilograms of crew supplies, hardware and experiments on growing food and cancer therapies and is expected to arrive at the ISS on April 22.

After the astronauts unpack the Cygnus, it will be reloaded with trash which the company has planned to burn up along with the spacecraft as it re-enters into Earth's atmosphere.

In addition to that, before its mission comes to a fiery end, Cygnus has also been scheduled to run an automated experiment to see how fire acts in microgravity. This experiment has been named as Saffire-III, the third in a series aimed at igniting a large-scale fire in microgravity.

"While in space, after travelling a safe distance from the station, the fire is lit and data is collected before re-entering the Earth's atmosphere," said a statement from NASA.

"The experiment lasts about two-and-a-half hours, of which 20 minutes is the actual burn of a fabric panel measuring 0.4 meters (yards) wide by one meter long," the statement added.

NASA has also planned a broadcast a 360-degree live stream of the launch.

"Those who own virtual reality headsets will be able to look around and experience the view as if they were actually standing on the launch pad," NASA said.

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