Bay Area Houston Magazine Publisher Rick Clapp welcomed representatives of Sierra Nevada Corporation to a luncheon at the NASA Hilton following the signing of a
Space Act Agreement with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration at the Johnson Space Center.
“Today is about a celebration,” Clapp said. “As we transition from the Shuttle we are coming into some new territory and some great opportunities for everyone. Not just for JSC or NASA, but for everyone in this community.” Listen: MP3 RealPlayer
“There is a lot of history and a lot of family in this area,” said Rick Galyean of the NASA Hilton also welcoming Sierra Nevada to the area, noting that he grew up with the children of the Apollo astronauts. Listen: MP3 RealPlayer
Congressman Pete Olson introduced Mark Sirangelo, president of Sierra Nevada.
Listen: MP3 RealPlayer
“We’ve been the leader (in space) for half a century,” Olson said. “But we cannot take this leadership position for granted.”
Sirangelo described Sierra Nevada’s Dream Chaser space vehicle, which is designed to carry seven people to and from low earth orbit. Listen: MP3 RealPlayer
“It’s what’s called a lifting body, or a piloted spacecraft,” he said. “It looks like, and acts like, a small version of the Space Shuttle.”
Bob Mitchell, president of Bay Area Houston Economic Partnership, said that the Dream Chaser will help to close the gap in spaceflight capability following the shuttle program; and thanked Sierra Nevada for opening an office in Bay Area Houston, “and taking advantage of the talent and knowledge that this community has fostered over the last 50 years”.