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NASA Space Science

NASA Awards New Commercial Crew Contracts 42

FleaPlus writes "Continuing last year's successful CCDev (Commercial Crew Development) program, NASA has selected four companies to receive 'CCDev2' seed funding for commercial crew systems. The companies will only receive money if they meet development and testing milestones in the next year, with $75M going to SpaceX for developing their sidemount escape system and testing their Dragon capsule, $92M to Boeing for developing their CST-100 capsule, $80M to Sierra Nevada Corp.'s DreamChaser top-mounted spaceplane, and $22M for Blue Origin's capsule and pusher escape system."
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NASA Awards New Commercial Crew Contracts

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  • by FleaPlus ( 6935 ) on Tuesday April 19, 2011 @03:43AM (#35865312) Journal

    (From a post I made over on the nasaspaceflight forums)

    From the Space Act Agreements, here's a quick summary of the payment milestones each company has set for each sub-project going up to a year from now: []

    Sierra Nevada:
    system requirements review
    canted airfoil fin selection
    cockpit based flight simulator
    vehicle avionics integration laboratory
    system defniition review
    flight control integration laboratory
    ETA structure delivery (does this mean "Engineering Test Article"?)
    separation system test
    preliminary design review for Dream Chaser
    optional milestones: materials testing captive carry and ETA landing gear drop tests, ETA captive carry flight test, wind tunnel testing, dream chaser handling qualities evaluation, main RCS test, two hybrid rocket motor test firing, thrust vector control test, ETA captive carry flight test readiness review, ETA free flight test

    Blue Origin (only listing final milestones for each sub-project):
    * Space Vehicle Design: space vehicle system requirements review
    * Pusher escape Risk Reduction: pusher escape ground firing, pusher escape pad escape test (optional milestones: pusher escape max-Q sled test calibration run, pusher escape max-Q sled test egress run)
    * RBS (reusable booster system) engine risk reduction: engine thrust chamber assembly test at Stennis (optional: engine pump cold gas drive test, engine pump hot gas drive test) [as an aside, apparently the RBF is a 100klbf restartable hydrolox engine)

    launch abort engine fabrication & hot fire test demonstration
    landing air bag drop demonstration #1
    phase I wind tunnel tests
    interim design review - 4
    parachute drop tests demonstration
    SM propellant tank development test
    LV EDS/ASIF interface simulation test
    preliminary design review
    optional milestones 12-25 all redacted

    launch abort system propulsion conceptual design review
    design status review 1 (for Falcon 9/Dragon crew transportation system)
    LAS propulsion components PDR
    crew accommodation concept prototype and in situ trial (internally-funded by SpaceX, NASA astronauts invited to try crew accomodations and give feedback)
    DSR 2
    crew accommodation concept delta-prototype and in-situ trial 2
    LAS propulsion component test articles complete
    LAS propulsion component initial test cycle
    concept baseline review
    (SpaceX seems to be the only one without "optional" milestones)

Karl's version of Parkinson's Law: Work expands to exceed the time alloted it.