Friday, 1 June 2012

Dream Chaser Flight Test Success

Dream Chaser flight vehicle is lifted by an Erickson Air-Crane
helicopter on May 29 2012 during a captive-carry test.
(Image credit: Sierra Nevada Corporation)

The Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) Space Systems' Dream Chaser design successfully completed one of its most significant tests to date near the Rocky Mountain Metropolitan Airport in Jefferson County, Colorado on May 29th 2012. The Dream Chaser is designed to carry up to seven astronauts into space and is designed to land on a conventional runway.

A full size flight vehicle of the Dream Chaser spacecraft was lifted by an Erickson Air-Crane helicopter to assess aerodynamic flight performance. This 'captive-carry' marks the completion of a key milestone for the Dream Chaser. Ed Mango, the CCP Program Manager said "This is a very positive success for the Dream Chaser team and their innovative approach. I applaud and encourage the designers and engineers to continue their efforts in meeting the objectives of the rest of their CCDev2 milestones."

Another recent milestone included an evaluation of the separation system of Dream Chaser from its launch vehicle, the Atlas V rocket, which would release the spacecraft from the rocket’s second stage after it has placed the spacecraft into low Earth orbit. 

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