SNC announced that it would be using ULA’s Vulcan vehicle to send its DC cargo to the ISS, beginning in 2021.Both the companies made a specific joint announcement, stating that the SNC had picked the Vulcan for launching its 6 Dream Chaser projects to ISS, under the SNC’s CRS-2 contract that was given by NASA back in 2016. DC will be launched with a 5m payload fairing, 4 strap-on, solid fuel boosters along with a 2-engine Centaur stage. This configuration allows DC to deliver over 5400 kg of spacecraft cargo to ISS. DC will also dispose over 3175 kg of cargo, bringing it back to Earth and will land on NASA’s KSC runway.
DC marks Vulcan’s first commercial debut. The 1st mission will be the rocket’s 2nd flight, stated Tory Bruno of ULA. The launch market had become too competitive these days. He stated that just being selected was an honor in itself. SNC’s original plan was to utilize ULA’s current Atlas 5 vehicle till the DC missions began. However, last year, it announced that it was searching for other options for upcoming missions, including Japanese or European launch vehicles.
John Curry of DC CRS2 stated that they chose the Vulcan as they felt it would be a great fit for the mission. Japanese vehicles like Ariane H3 and 6, European vehicles, Blue Origin and SpaceX vehicles had also been considered, which all displayed exceptional capabilities.
She added that ULA possessed an advantage over others since they’ve been working together for a long time now. The prices were also quite competitive, she said. No further financial details were revealed about this deal, including where a discount had been issued for another Vulcan launch. ULA classified this as a vehicle’s certification flight. Bruno also mentioned that pricing data was proprietary. Bruno promised that the DC vehicle would fulfill its functions perfectly well.
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