SNC Hires Lockheed Martin for Dream Chaser Certification, Manufacturing Work

dream_chaser_liftoff_smSPARKS, Nev., January 30, 2013 (SNC PR) – Sierra Nevada Corporation’s (SNC) Space Systems is pleased to announce Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company of Littleton, Colo., is joining the SNC Dream Chaser® team. Lockheed Martin will be an exclusive partner to SNC on NASA’s Certification Products Contract (CPC) and has been competitively selected to build the composite structure for the Dream Chaser at NASA’s Michoud Assembly Facility in New Orleans, La. SNC was awarded $10 million for CPC Phase 1 to work with NASA towards government certification of the SNC Dream Chaser orbital crew transportation system.

“The SNC team is thrilled that Lockheed Martin will be joining our expanding world-class team of partner organizations also working to certify the Dream Chaser Space System for crewed flights to the International Space Station for NASA,” said Mark Sirangelo, corporate vice president and head of SNC’s Space Systems.

“The CPC contract offers the Dream Chaser team the opportunity for a more robust technical interchange with NASA as we work to develop a safe, reliable orbital crew transportation system,” Sirangelo added. “This contract capitalizes on SNC’s success working with NASA’s Commercial Crew Program, as well as Lockheed Martin’s expertise in developing and certifying Orion’s beyond low Earth orbit human spaceflight hardware as part of NASA’s Exploration Program. Our team will work towards the common goal of certifying the Dream Chaser to provide the next generation human transportation system.”

Lockheed Martin is developing NASA’s Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle (MPCV) and brings extensive and current experience in obtaining NASA certification for a crewed flight vehicle to the Dream Chaser program.

“We are pleased to join the SNC Dream Chaser team. Lockheed Martin brings with it tremendous human-rated space flight knowledge from our significant experience with large, human-flight structures, including 135 flights with the Space Shuttle’s external fuel tanks. We feel we can share many synergies between the Orion exploration spacecraft and the Dream Chaser lifting body space vehicle. This provides a great opportunity to take NASA’s investments in crew exploration capabilities and leverage them toward commercial transportation to low Earth orbit,” said Jim Crocker, vice president and general manager, Civil Space, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company.

The composite structure for the Dream Chaser flight test vehicle is being built under the SNC $212.5 million Space Act Agreement for the NASA Commercial Crew Integrated Capability Program. This effort leverages the extensive Lockheed Martin experience in building composite structures for spacecraft and high performance aircraft. With the addition of Lockheed Martin as a partner on the Dream Chaser program, SNC is now working with partner organizations in over 15 states on NASA’s Commercial Crew Integrated Capability program.

“We are pleased to include Lockheed Martin as part of the Dream Chaser Team to develop early certification products and to build critical flight hardware. Their recent human spacecraft certification experience and composite expertise make them a great addition to our program,” said Jim Voss, vice president of Space Exploration Systems and Dream Chaser program manager.

The SNC and Lockheed Martin partnership represents the best of entrepreneurial spirit and established space mission success, collaborating on vehicle development, certification and reaching additional customer markets for the Dream Chaser orbital vehicle. The team looks forward to working with NASA to successfully execute on the first round of the CPC contract and move towards offering the Dream Chaser Space System as a commercial solution to crew and cargo servicing of the International Space Station.