An American commercial cargo aircraft that will soon be embarking on the journey to the international space station, has been named after late Indian astronaut Kalpana Chawla. 

The decision was taken by global aerospace company, Northrop Grumman, which is based out of the US. 

Their next Cygnus capsule will be named ‘S.S. Kalpana Chawla’, in memory of the first Indian woman to travel to space.

Divulging more details about the same, the company noted on its website:

Northrop Grumman is proud to name the NG-14 Cygnus spacecraft after former astronaut Kalpana Chawla. It is the company’s tradition to name each Cygnus after an individual who has played a pivotal role in human spaceflight.

It also posted this tweet to make the announcement. 

Kalpana Chawla and 6 other crew members died in 2003, when the Space Shuttle Columbia (OV-102) burned to ashes while entering the Earth’s atmosphere.

The Cygnus capsule is scheduled to leave planet Earth on September 29.