Spirit AeroSystems to improve space cargo systems

Spirit AeroSystems and private US space company Sierra Space have formed a strategic partnership to develop transport vehicles used to send cargo to space stations.

The companies also plan to find ways to market Sierra’s Dream Chaser range of scalable spaceplanes.

Spirit will initially work with Sierra Space to improve the accessibility and efficiency of its Sierra Space Shooting Star cargo system by making more affordable cargo modules to go to the International Space Station (ISS) under a NASA contract.

The Shooting Star is a 15-foot transport vehicle that attaches to the rear of the Dream Chaser spaceplane. The module can carry up to 10,000 pounds of pressurized and unpressurized cargo, including critical science and provisions, according to Spirit.

“Working with Spirit Defense & Space, we will broaden access to tomorrow’s space economy; lowering the cost of entry and increasing the speed to market of Sierra Space’s Dream Chaser franchise. Together we will accelerate the commercialization of space,” said Sierra Space CEO, Tom Vice.