Headlines > News > SpaceX Successfully Completes NASA Systems Requirements Review for Dragon Spacecraft Demonstration to Berth at International Space Station

SpaceX Successfully Completes NASA Systems Requirements Review for Dragon Spacecraft Demonstration to Berth at International Space Station

Published by Klaus Schmidt on Tue Dec 18, 2007 9:09 pm
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HAWTHORNE, CA, (SpaceX) – Space Exploration Technologies Corp. (SpaceX) has completed the Systems Requirements Review (SRR) for what will be the third Falcon 9 / Dragon demonstration under NASA’s Commercial Orbital Transportation Services (COTS) program. NASA representatives attended the event, held on the first day of regular business operations at SpaceX’s new headquarters in Hawthorne, California.

Under COTS, SpaceX will conduct three Falcon 9 / Dragon flights, demonstrating the ability to approach, berth, and ultimately deliver cargo to the $100 billion dollar International Space Station (ISS), and return cargo to Earth. On this third demonstration, the Dragon spacecraft will approach the ISS and hold its position nearby. Then, according to the SpaceX plan, a robotic arm on the station will capture Dragon and guide it to a berthing port on the Harmony module.

“When the hatch opens, a new era in space transportation will begin,” said Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX. “By providing commercial delivery services to orbit, SpaceX will transform the way the government and private entities access space. The Falcon 9 / Dragon system will ensure that there is no gap in US space transportation capabilities following retirement of the Space Shuttle in 2010.”

During the meeting, all comments and questions raised by NASA’s experts were addressed by the SpaceX design team. “Because we connect to the ISS on this mission, NASA applied significant additional scrutiny to ensure the safety of the station and its crew,” said Max Vozoff, SpaceX Mission Manager. By receiving NASA approval for this review, SpaceX continues its record of successfully meeting all COTS milestones on schedule.

Although these demonstrations are for cargo re-supply, SpaceX designed the Dragon spacecraft to transport up to seven astronauts to Earth orbit and back.

About SpaceX

Space Exploration Technologies (SpaceX) is developing a family of launch vehicles intended to reduce the cost and increase the reliability of both manned and unmanned space transportation. With its Falcon launch vehicles, SpaceX offers light, medium and heavy lift capabilities to deliver spacecraft into any inclination and altitude, from low Earth orbit to geosynchronous orbit to planetary missions.

http://www.spacex.com/00Graphics/Images/1_Dragon_Near_ISS.JPG
SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft approaches the International Space Station, where it is grappled by a robotic arm, then attached to the station’s docking adapter.

http://www.spacex.com/00Graphics/Images/2_Dragon_at_ISS_MCU.JPG
SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft approached the International Space Station, where it was grappled by a robotic arm, then attached to the station’s docking adapter on the Harmony module.

http://www.spacex.com/00Graphics/Images/3_Dragon_at_ISS_SIDE.JPG
Wide view of SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft berthed at the International Space Station, attached to the station’s docking adapter.

http://www.spacex.com/00Graphics/Images/4_Dragon_at_ISS_WIDE.JPG
SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft berthed at the International Space Station’s Harmony module.
Video Caption: SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft approaches the International Space Station, where it is grappled by a robotic arm, then attached to the station’s docking adapter. Credit: SpaceX.com

http://www.spacex.com/00Graphics/Merlin_1C_video.jpg
Test firing of a Merlin 1C engine at the SpaceX test facility in McGregor, Texas.
Powered by liquid oxygen and rocket grade kerosene, the Merlin produces over 100,000 pounds
of thrust in vacuum, and is designed to be recovered and reused after each mission. (Video: SpaceX)
click picture to play a video in Windows Media Player

http://www.spacex.com/00Graphics/Images/Merlin_1C_Firing.jpg
A Merlin 1C engine undergoing development test firing at the SpaceX test facility in McGregor Texas.
The Merlin 1C engine will power the next Falcon 1 flight, scheduled for Q1 2008. (Photo: SpaceX)

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