Thursday, October 08, 2015

Sierra Nevada Proposing DreamChaser as X-37B Alternative

Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) believes its Dream Chaser could be a viable alternative to the Boeing X-37B Orbital Test Vehicle for long-duration, recoverable experimentation in space.

The company says its vehicle, which is still in development, could be called upon to support the kinds of missions the US Air Force is currently conducting with the X-37B.

With an updated, folding-wing design unveiled earlier this year, SNC’s Dream Chaser can be launched inside a standard Atlas V or Delta IV payload fairing and can “stay on orbit well in excess of a year”, the company says.

SNC Space Systems corporate vice-president Mark Sirangelo says that while he cannot say what types of missions the Orbital Test Vehicle programme is trying to accomplish, Dream Chaser would be a larger and viable alternative to Boeing’s experimental spacecraft.

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