Sierra Nevada Corporation to Testify at House Hearing on NASA’s Commercial Crew Development Program

Sparks, NV October 26th, 2011 – Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) has been asked to testify at the October 26th hearing before the U.S. House of Representatives, Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, which is reviewing NASA’s Commercial Crew Development Program (CCDev).   SNC has been developing the Dream Chaser®, a shuttle-like lifting body space vehicle, under the NASA CCDev Phase 1 and 2 programs.   Testifying for SNC will be Steve Lindsey, a 16 year NASA veteran who not only was pilot or commander on 5 space shuttle missions, including commanding the final flight of the Space Shuttle Discovery in February, 2011, but also served as Chief of the Astronaut Corps, responsible for spacecraft development, crew selection and training, and flight test/crew operations.  Mr. Lindsey is currently Director of Flight Operations for SNC’s Space Systems business area. 

Mr. Lindsey will provide a brief overview of SNC and our space program experience, spanning more than 20 years and including support to more than 400 space missions, as well as background on the Dream Chaser® vehicle which is an evolution of the NASA HL-20 spacecraft, originally designed as a lifeboat for the International Space Station (ISS).  NASA Langley performed more than 1,200 wind tunnel tests and performed thousands of piloted simulations in its decade-long investment refining the HL-20 design.  SNC started with Langley’s 10 years of research and has invested an additional 6 years of capital, engineering, time, and effort to develop a very sophisticated reusable space plane that can satisfy NASA’s low Earth orbit needs.

In addition to highlighting SNC’s world-class team of partner companies, with work being performed across 14 states, and successful achievement of all milestones to date on the program, Lindsey will discuss SNC’s commitment to the program, including company co-investment, the contracting arrangements, and the unique partnership SNC has with NASA that provides NASA with both oversight of the program, and detailed insight into every phase of development through an embedded “Partner Integration Team” of NASA experts within the SNC facilities in Louisville, Colorado. 

As Chief of the Astronaut office, Lindsey’s number one responsibility was the safety of the Space Shuttle crews – and under his watch NASA successfully executed 14 Space Shuttle missions, each time bringing the crews home safely.  Regarding the ability of commercial companies to develop safe vehicles and service operations to deliver crews to the ISS, Lindsey will testify, “let me assure all of you that under my watch we will never, ever sacrifice safety for any reason; with our industry partners and NASA’s guidance, we will do the job right.”

About Sierra Nevada Corporation’s Space Systems

Sierra Nevada Corporation’s Space Systems business area headquartered in Louisville, Colorado, designs and manufactures advanced spacecraft, space vehicles, and spacecraft subsystems for commercial and government customers.  Space Systems (SS) has more than 20 years heritage in space, successfully delivering over 400 subsystems for 300+ satellite missions. Current key programs include NASA’s Commercial Crew Development program where we are developing our Dream Chaser® 7 passenger vehicle to take astronauts to the International Space Station; the ORBCOMM Generation 2 program that includes production of 18-48 small satellites for a commercial asset tracking company; the SpaceShip2 program where we are developing a non-toxic “green” rocket engine for Virgin Galactic’s suborbital space vehicle to carry tourists to space; and the Modular Space Vehicle program for the DoD’s Operationally Responsive Space Office.  For more information about SS visit

MEDIA CONTACT: or 720-407-3192

For more information, including images and video, please visit our website at:

About Sierra Nevada Corporation

Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) is one of America’s fastest growing private companies based on its significant expansion and reputation for rapid, innovative, and agile technology solutions in electronics, aerospace, avionics, space, propulsion, micro-satellite, aircraft, communications systems and solar energy. Under the leadership of CEO Fatih Ozmen and President and CFO Eren Ozmen, SNC employs over 2100 people in 31 locations in 16 states.  SNC’s seven unique business areas are dedicated to providing leading-edge solutions to SNC’s dynamic customer base.

SNC is also the Top Woman-Owned Federal Contractor in the United States. Over the last 30 years under the Ozmen’s leadership, SNC has remained focused on providing its customers the very best in diversified technologies to meet their needs and has a strong and proven track record of success. The company continues to focus its growth on the commercial sector through internal advancements and outside acquisitions, including the emerging markets of renewable energy, telemedicine, nanotechnology, cyber and net-centric operations. For more information on SNC visit

MEDIA CONTACT: or 775-331-0222