On Nov. 11, 2017, the Sierra Nevada Corporation performed the successful free-flight test of the Dream Chaser space plane. Click the arrows at left to see photos from the successful test here. See video of the glide test here.
The glide test success indicates the program is one step closer to orbital exercises.
Ready for Testing
The spacecraft was moved from inside the facility by a transport to prepare for the test.
Gear in Place
Apparatus attached atop the Dream Chaser enabled a helicopter to raise the craft for the release and flight.
Up and Away
The full scale Dream Chaser craft, shown here lifted by a Columbia Helicopters Model 234-UT Chinook helicopter, flew a pre-planned flight path after its release.
Safe and Secure
The successful test flight ended at Edwards Air Force Base on Runway 22L.
The first trip to the International Space Station for the Dream Chaser is planned for 2020.
Practicing for the Big Journey
The Dream Chaser is scheduled for at least six missions under NASA's Commercial Resupply Services 2 contract, beginning as early as 2020.
This atmosphere Free-Flight test verified the craft has the design and capabilities to return and land safely.
Sierra Nevada Corporation's Dream Chaser has displayed the ability to provide safe and reliable orbital flight, according to corporate vice president, Mark Sirangelo.
Approaching the Runway
With NASA on board, Sierra Nevada Corporation will analyze the test data.