The spacemen opened the capsule a day early and started removing items, as soon as the Orbital Sciences Corp. vessel was moored safely at the International Space Station. Packed inside were 3,000 pounds (1,360 kilograms) of groceries, equipment and experiments, as well as eagerly awaited Christmas gifts from their families back home and some fresh fruit courtesy of NASA.
Among the first things out: ants that are part of an educational project.
NASA is relying on private industry to keep the orbiting lab well stocked in this post-shuttle era and, in three or four more years, possibly supply rides for U.S. astronauts as well. This was Orbital Sciences’ second shipment.
Read more at: Phys.org