The Cyngus cargo spacecraft was sent in to space in conjunction with the recent Orbital ATK rocket. It was loaded up to restock the International Space Station with all of the crap that they need, but its mission isn’t done with delivery. Once emptied, it will be refilled with trash. At that point it will be sent out – and set on fire.
It’s not just fun – it’s part of a “Beavis And Butthead”-esque set of experiments. In this case, the Saffire-II experiment will be to burn samples of nine different materials – just to see what happens, and then send the data back to Earth. Good times!
The purpose is to teach NASA about how they can respond to different fire and emergency situations. The Earth-bound benefit would be to help teach how fuel can be burned more efficiently down on Terra Firma.
Source: Digital Trends