Sparks, Nev., July 08, 2014 – Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) announces it has completed a major Main Propulsion System (MPS) and Reaction Control System (RCS) risk reduction milestone for the Dream Chaser® Space System, maturing the design of each system close to Critical Design Review (CDR). The milestone positions SNC one step closer to restoring U.S. crew transportation to low-Earth orbit (LEO).
SNC completed the work for milestone 9a under its Commercial Crew Integrated Capability (CCiCap) agreement with NASA. In total, SNC has received over 80 percent of the total award value of the CCiCap agreement having successfully completed 10 of 13 milestones.
The Main Propulsion System is based on SNC’s patented rocket motor technology. To date, SNC has performed hundreds of rocket motor test firings at its Poway, California, facility advancing the motor technology with each test. The Dream Chaser MPS will not only power the spacecraft in orbit, it also offers a unique abort capability while on the launch pad and throughout the flight trajectory, unlike human space transportation capsules. The MPS technology used on the Dream Chaser results in a safe runway landing during an abort scenario, further reducing risk to the crew, spacecraft and payload.
The RCS, which is being designed by Orbital Technologies Corporation (ORBITEC), will provide precise on-orbit control of the Dream Chaser spacecraft. The RCS will provide maneuvering capability to allow for the accurate docking of the Dream Chaser to destinations in low-Earth orbit. Dream Chaser is a multi-mission capable spacecraft that has the ability to operate as an independent science platform or as a logistics vehicle to retrieve, repair, replace, assemble or deploy items in space.
“Safety is paramount in the design of the Dream Chaser Space System,” said Mark N. Sirangelo, corporate vice president of SNC’s Space Systems. “It is driven by reliability, rigorous quality assurance, consistent performance and extensive testing and analysis. In passing this milestone we are able to validate our safety and performance, while decreasing the risk for each of these systems. Completing this milestone moves the Dream Chaser closer to the Critical Design Review of our complete system.”
SNC is working with NASA’s Commercial Crew Program to develop a safe, innovative, modern, flexible and highly-capable crew transportation system for the 21st Century. Dream Chaser provides the only reusable, human-rated, lifting-body spacecraft with a commercial runway landing capability, anywhere in the world, and is on the forefront of the commercial human spaceflight industry, offering safe, reliable and cost-effective crew and critical cargo transportation to LEO.
About Sierra Nevada Corporation's Space Systems
Sierra Nevada Corporation's Space Systems business area based in Louisville, Colorado, designs and manufactures advanced spacecraft, space vehicles, rocket motors and spacecraft subsystems and components for the U.S. Government, commercial customers as well as for the international market. SNC's Space Systems has more than 25 years of space heritage and has participated in over 400 successful space missions through the delivery of over 4,000 systems, subsystems and components. During its history, SNC's Space Systems has concluded over 70 programs for NASA and over 50 other clients. For more information about SNC's Space Systems visit www.sncspace.com.
Media Contact: SNCDreamChaser@sncorp.com or Krystal Scordo at 720-407-3192
About Sierra Nevada Corporation
Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC), headquartered in Sparks, Nevada, 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 Eren Ozmen, SNC has a workforce of over 3,000 personnel in 30 locations in 16 states. SNC's six 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 also on the commercial sector through internal advancements in dual-use applications and outside acquisitions, including the emerging markets of renewable energy, telemedicine, nanotechnology, cyber and net-centric operations. For more information on SNC visit www.sncorp.com and follow us at Facebook.com/SierraNevCorp.