Sierra Nevada Corporation’s Dream Chaser spacecraft is about to enter final assembly, integration and testing after the primary structure was delivered from Lockheed Martin. Marking the event, SNC officials are confident their vehicle will conduct her first ISS resupply mission in the latter part of 2021 under NASA’s Commercial Resupply Services 2 (CRS2) contract.
The structure – 30 feet long by 15 feet wide and approximately 6 feet high and weighs roughly 2,200 pounds – is the largest piece of technology to make up Dream Chaser and the most advanced high-temperature composite spaceframe ever built.
It is a pressurized composite structure that will contain pressurized payloads heading to the ISS. It will also host a large amount of critical down mass returning to Earth.
The structure was manufactured by subcontractor Lockheed Martin, where it was “baked” in an autoclave.
Dream Chaser was "baked" in an autoclave.
Steve Lindsey, former NASA astronaut and space shuttle commander and legend, SNC Senior Vice President of Space Exploration Systems. pic.twitter.com/WZqJKgnemx
— Chris B – NSF (@NASASpaceflight) October 15, 2019
Following structure’s completion at Lockheed Martin, it recently shipped from their Fort Worth, Texas facility to Louisville, Colorado, where Dream Chaser is being built ...