Non-public spaceflight firm, Sierra Nevada, introduced its reusable spacecraft, the Dream Chaser, accomplished a profitable free flight and touchdown on a runway in California. The check was carried out at Edwards Air Power base in Southern California. The stunt was supposed to check Dream Chaser’s touchdown capabilities.
After being launched from a helicopter, Dream Chaser made a 60-second free flight. The automobile has been in improvement for greater than a decade now.
Sierra Nevada beforehand examined one other Dream Chaser prototype 4 years in the past. Nonetheless, this didn’t land efficiently on the runway attributable to a touchdown gear downside.
Company Vice President accountable for the corporate’s House Methods division, Mark Sirangelo emphasised the improved dealing with capabilities within the newest mannequin.
“We got here again and did it once more with a greater, stronger, extra superior automobile, and this time we caught the touchdown,” stated Sirangelo “It’s an enormous step forwards”.
The flight reportedly met all necessities set by the corporate.
SNC is proud to announce the Dream Chaser® spacecraft had a profitable free-flight check at the moment @EdwardsAFB, with help of @NASAArmstrong. The Dream Chaser had an exquisite flight and touchdown! pic.twitter.com/lAn0n7FPsg
— Sierra Nevada Corp (@SierraNevCorp) November 12, 2017
Dream Chaser ushers in a brand new age of unmanned spaceflight
The spacecraft is scheduled to fly to and from the Worldwide House Station beginning with 2020.
The helicopter slung the prototype on a 61-meter tether whereas at an altitude of over three thousand meters. Dream Chaser then made a totally unmanned descent reaching a most of 330 mph. It landed on the runway at a velocity of 191 mph.
SpaceX and Orbital ATK developed comparable concepts, nonetheless, their fashions are totally different from the Dream Chaser relating to touchdown capabilities. ATK’s capsule, Cygnus burns within the Earth’s environment after leaving the station whereas SpaceX’s Dragon capsule lands within the ocean utilizing parachutes. The Dream Chaser is ready to descend to Earth and land horizontally on a runway.
The corporate selected United Launch Alliance’s Atlas 5 rocket to launch their first two Dream Chasers. They’re scheduled to launch from Cape Canaveral, Florida, in 2020 and 2021.
Picture Supply: WikipediaCommons