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Dream Chaser A Go

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posted on Dec, 30 2018 @ 08:32 PM

Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) has been given the go ahead from NASA to begin full-scale production of it’s “Dream Chaser” commercial space cargo plane. Scheduled to make its first mission in 2020, the company announced on December 18 that it had cleared the last milestone in its Commercial Resupply Services 2 contract. Now the company is able to move ahead with the full-scale production of the carrier which will be used to deliver cargo to the International Space Station (ISS).

Cool stuff, will have a cargo and passenger version beginning launch in late 2020. Hopefully this could not only benefit the ISS but also contribute to other space stations construction in the future.

SNC was one of three companies, alongside SpaceX and Orbital ATK (now Northrop Grumman Innovation Systems), to receive a commercial cargo contract from NASA in 2016. The contract guarantees each corporation at least six missions to the ISS.

Competition or cooperation too I suppose, wonder which will be the first to deliver pizza? Huge pizza contract potential here.

I wish one of these co's would go public so we could invest in the future, but then again appeasing shareholders could compromise efforts in space endeavors and safety eh?
Regardless, this is another innovative step to the next frontier..

The Dream Chaser cargo system is designed to deliver up to 5,500 kg of pressurized and unpressurized cargo to the space station, including food, water, supplies and science experiments. The Dream Chaser can gently return critical cargo with a runway landing at less than 1.5 g’s. After leaving the space station, the Dream Chaser can also dispose of trash. The vehicle is designed for high reusability, reducing overall cost and a quick turnaround between missions. The ability to launch on top of multiple launch vehicles and land at a wide variety of runways makes Dream Chaser a flexible option for reliable transportation.

One craft can be reused 15 times. Wonder if they then put new outer layer on or scrap the whole thing?
Here is additional link with more specs

edit on 0pmf31405331 by waftist because: (no reason given)

posted on Dec, 30 2018 @ 09:06 PM
I hadn't been following dream chaser as much, as I had kind of written it off in the past as somewhat a boondoggle with it's wings and what not. Guess I will have to look deeper into it. The commercial space race sure is heating up, and that is absolutely fantastic, as it is about time we got so real stuff going on in space.

posted on Dec, 30 2018 @ 09:43 PM
a reply to: dubiousatworst

It's a lifting body. They've proven quite successful, and have the advantage of being able to use a runway so don't need specialized recovery equipment on landing to get it back to be refurbished and used again.

posted on Dec, 30 2018 @ 10:13 PM
a reply to: Zaphod58
I'm not questioning that it can be used as a lifting body, but more so the efficiency of using a lifting body of those dimensions due to the "tyranny of the rocket equation". I am more so worried about the nature of recovery, and all of the failure modes that it presents, as I assume it will be a glider for re-entry. Then the inherent danger of requiring a runway to land when you don't have propulsion (significant amounts that is) after re-entry.

posted on Dec, 30 2018 @ 10:39 PM
a reply to: dubiousatworst

It worked on the shuttle for its entire life, there is no reason to think it won't be as efficient here.

posted on Dec, 30 2018 @ 10:46 PM
Is it a sturdy craft. I have an eye for durability. A square windshield. Like an old window.

posted on Dec, 31 2018 @ 01:09 PM
Anyone know how long it would take craft to reach ISS? What speed does it travel?

posted on Dec, 31 2018 @ 01:22 PM
a reply to: waftist

It's no different than other spacecraft. It takes around 6 hours to dock with the ISS from launch. Sometimes it can take longer, but that's about the average lately.

posted on Jan, 3 2019 @ 07:02 AM
I can’t help but notice an outward similarity to the X-20 Dyna-Soar. Form really does follow function I suppose.

posted on Jan, 3 2019 @ 10:23 AM
a reply to: sqd5driver

Dream Chaser is based off of the HL-20 spaceplane concept from the 1980s, which was in turn a NASA copy of the Soviet BOR-4 lifting body design, a proof-of-concept model built to validate the spacecraft design planned for the MiG-105 Spiral program, which in turn was an air-launched spaceplane concept originally designed by the USSR to counter, yep, the X-20 Dynasoar program.

So you're pretty spot-on.

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