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ULA's Take on COTS

By Keith Cowing
NASA Watch
September 18, 2007

United Launch Alliance Response to Request for Information for Commercial Space Transportation Services

“ULA is working closely with SpaceHab to investigate the compatibility of flying the DreamChaserTM on an Atlas. As a lifting body, the DreamChaserTM provides unique challenges to integrate on an existing launch vehicle, including loads, controllability, and performance, in addition to the human-rating considerations. Our initial studies have leveraged the considerable experience gained during NASA’s Orbital Space Plane (OSP) Program that baselined EELVs for launch of numerous OSP configurations, including similar lifting body concepts. This provided an excellent baseline from which we conducted numerous Trade Studies focused on risk reduction and design integration to meet an ILC of 2011. The initial studies have indicated that the risks associated with integrating the DreamChaserTM on an Atlas are manageable and can be accomplished.”

NASA Watch founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.