The CEO and President of global aerospace and national security company Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC) reiterated the firm’s continued commitment to the development and production of innovative technology to maintain U.S. leadership in space and to achieve this administration’s goal of a U.S. lunar landing in the next five years.
“All of us at SNC understand and share — with NASA and others in the space program — the sense of urgency to accelerate the development and deployment of the next-generation technology for space exploration. Delays are unacceptable and our time is now — we are with you and want to be an enabler,” stated Eren Ozmen, SNC’s President and Chairwoman, and CEO Fatih Ozmen, in a letter to Vice President Mike Pence.
Fatih Ozmen is also a member of the National Space Council and serves in the council’s Users’ Advisory Group.
SNC has developed a comprehensive architecture of high-performance, innovative technology and components — including reusable spacecraft, space habitats and propulsion systems — to support U.S. missions within Earth’s orbit and to the moon, Mars and beyond.
SNC’s technological space innovations include the following.
Dream Chaser® Spacecraft
The SNC Dream Chaser® spacecraft is a reusable, multimission space utility vehicle. It is capable of transportation services to and from low-Earth orbit and, like the NASA space shuttle, is the only commercial space vehicle capable of a runway landing. The Dream Chaser® cargo system was selected by NASA to provide cargo delivery and disposal services to the International Space Station.
The SNC lunar Gateway architecture concept is large enough to comfortably accommodate four astronauts for 10-to-60-day stays to support exploration of the moon and prepare for longer-duration missions, including travel to Mars. Positioned in lunar orbit, the Gateway, developed under NASA’s Next Space Technologies for Exploration Partnerships 2 (or NextSTEP-2) program, is envisioned as a habitat, a science laboratory and a staging point for space exploration missions.
Power and Propulsion Element
The SNC Power and Propulsion Element (PPE) concept provides the power, propulsion and communications for the entire Gateway platform. Anticipating the desire for expediting humans’ return to the moon, SNC’s PPE uniquely provides features that will support an accelerated schedule for human missions to the lunar surface.
The SNC VORTEX® engine applies patented vortex technology to a new family of high-performance rocket engines that will serve as boosters and upper-stage engines for a variety of space missions for NASA, commercial space companies and the U.S. military. The SNC VORTEX® engine will expand performance for the U.S. in booster and upper-stage propulsion while significantly reducing costs.
SNC engineers are creating the next generation of bioagricultural products through system and service solutions that increase plant productivity on Earth and in space. SNC’s unique capabilities stem from decades of research in environmental control in partnership with NASA and are optimized for growth of plant-made pharmaceuticals, industrial products and high-yield crops through lighting, control systems, automation and growth services. SNC’s work with NASA to create the vegetable production system (known as VEGGIE) and advanced plant habitat systems on the International Space Station is helping scientists understand more about plants and give critical insight into growing fresh food in space for long-duration travel.