An experiment inside one of the cargo modules of Cygnus capsules ATK, after it will deliver astronauts to the ISS next shipment of food and supplies.
On the way back to Earth the scientists will burn inside the module piece made of wool and cotton fabric. The module will be equipped with sensors, which in the experiment will measure all the parameters of the fire — temperature, speed of distribution and volume of the flame.
The flight module to the ISS is scheduled for 23 March.
"Saffire will be the largest man-made cosmic fire in history. Now we have the opportunity to perform experiments with fire in microgravity conditions of the ISS, but only on a small scale. Saffire will allow us to burn larger pieces of material without endangering the lives of the crew," explains project Manager Harry Saffire RAF.
The study of a large fire in space would be useful also from the point of view of fire safety problems on the spacecraft, adds RAF.
Scientists expect that the capsule will be completely destroyed when entering the Earth's atmosphere after the experiment.