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Dream Chaser

Dream Chaser [SNC]

Dream Chaser test vehicle [SNC]

The Dream Chaser is a planned crewed orbital lifting-body space plane being developed by SpaceDev, now a subsidiary of Sierra Nevada Corporation (SNC). Dream Chaser is designed to carry up to seven people to and from low earth orbit to carry crews to the ISS and potentially to other private space stations. The vehicle would launch vertically on an Atlas-5(412) and land horizontally on conventional runways.

The reusable Dream Chaser is based on the NASA developed HL-20 lifting body shape. For docking with the space station, Dream Chaser will use an rear mounted APAS docking adaptor.

SNC received US$20 million from NASA under the CCDev program and US$80 million under the CCDev2 program to mature the Dream Chaser design.

The primary structure of the Dream Chaser atmospheric test vehicle is already under construction. It uses a helicopter as a platform for drop trials of the Dream Chaser atmospheric test vehicle in 2012. The first free gliding flight ended in a mishap, when one of the lang gear legs failed to deploy and the vehicle flipped over on the runway.

The propulsion system for launch escape, orbital maneuvering and deorbiting is planned to consist of two in house built hybrid rockets based on the SS1 design. In mid 2014, it was reported to have been changed to a ORBITEC built liquid fuel system using propane and liquid oxygen as fuel.

In September 2014, SNC's Dream Chaser was not selected for the commercial crew program. The Dream Chaser was further developed into the unmanned Dream Chaser Cargo variant offered for the CRS-2 competition.

Nation: USA
Type / Application: Manned spacecraft
Operator: NASA
Contractors: Sierra Nevada Corp. (SNC) (formerly SpaceDev)
Equipment: APAS docking adaptor
Configuration: HL-20 lifting body
Propulsion: 2 × hybrid motors (dual for deorbit and launch escape system)
Power: Batteries
Lifetime:
Mass: 9000 kg
Orbit: 400 km × 400 km, 51.6 (typical)
Satellite COSPAR Date LS Launch Vehicle Remarks
Dream Chaser F1 - cancelled CC LC-41 Atlas-5(412)

References:

Further Dream Chaser missions: