Dream Chaser Heads to Dryden for Start of Free Flight Tests

dream-chaser-flight-vehicle

Following a path taken in 1977 by the Space Shuttle Enterprise which saw the orbiter’s first ever free fly flight over NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center at Edwards Air Force Base, Ca. Sierra Nevada Corporation is preparing to embark on a series of tests of its own Dream Chaser space plane as a part of NASA’s Commercial Crew Program.  

NASA Commercial  Crew Update

Sierra Nevada Corp. (SNC) Space Systems currently is shipping its Dream Chaser engineering test article from the company’s facility in Louisville, Colo., to NASA’s Dryden Flight Research Center in Edwards, Calif., where it will begin its flight test program in collaboration with NASA’s Commercial Crew Program (CCP). The five-state journey that began the morning of Saturday, May 11, will take approximately four days to complete.

The testing at Dryden will include tow, captive-carry and free-flight tests of the Dream Chaser. A truck will tow the vehicle down a runway to validate performance of the nose strut, brakes and tires. The captive-carry flights will further examine the loads the vehicle will encounter during flight and test the performance and flutter of the vehicle up to release from an Erickson Skycrane helicopter. The free-flight tests are designed to validate the Dream Chaser’s aerodynamics as well as test the flight control surfaces to verify flight characteristics for approach, flare and landing.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s