New autonomous NASA space shuttle lands successful test flight

New autonomous NASA space shuttle lands successful test flight

Sierra Nevada Corporation is developing the Dream Chaser for the last ten years, together with NASA, the latter then singled out to develop more than 125 million dollars.

The previous one took place in October 2013 but was marred by a landing gear failure, which caused the Dream Chaser ETA to skid off the runway.

Yesterday, November 12, in the U.S. private Corporation Sierra Nevada told the public about the successful completion of the tests reusable spaceship Dream Chaser.

NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center said in November 11 statement that the glide flight "verified and validated the performance of the Dream Chaser in the critical final approach and landing phase of flight". Sierra Nevada filed a protest, but the government's General Accounting Office upheld the decision.

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The Dream Chaser last flew in 2013, but a problem with its left landing gear meant it had a hard touchdown, which caused the plane to skid off the runway and sustain minor damage. Orbital ATK's capsule - known as Cygnus - is then created to burn up in the Earth's atmosphere once it leaves the station, while SpaceX's Dragon cargo capsule can survive the descent to Earth, using parachutes to land in the ocean.

The compact space plane carries no crew, but will transport cargo to the International Space Station in the years ahead and conduct other missions in orbit around the Earth. Sierra Nevada initially designed the Dream Chaser to carry astronauts, but the company has since reworked the design to be an autonomous cargo spaceplane. A fully working version of the Dream Chaser could start making deliveries as soon as 2020, if all goes according to schedule. Future orbital vehicles will launch on Atlas V rockets from United Launch Alliance, and Lockheed Martin has partnered with Sierra Nevada to develop the composite structural shell of the orbital-class vehicles.

The craft was made by the Sierra Nevada Corporation and was tested at NASA's Armstrong Flight Research Center in California.

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