Blue Origin and Sierra Space unveil plans for commercial space station

By the time they start assembly, SpaceX will probably be offering Long Duration Starship flights for microgravity research.
I see this as Dream Chaser's salvation..I hope. I wonder if Stucky might have pushed for this...being a stick-and-rudder man who wants to pilot a REAL spaceplane.

Orbital Reef passes design review​

by Jeff Foust — April 5, 2022

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Orbital Reef, a commercial space station being developed by a consortium of companies, has completed an initial design review as part of a NASA award.

Blue Origin and Sierra Space, the lead partners in the project, announced April 5 that Orbital Reef completed a system requirements review. The review was one of the first milestones in a $130 million funded Space Act Agreement NASA awarded the companies as part of its Commercial Low Earth Orbit Destinations, or CLD, program.

The review examined the design of Orbital Reef as well as its technical specifications, planned operations and feasibility of development plans. Sierra Space said the review led to no changes in the station’s design.
WASHINGTON — A proposed commercial space station has passed a key early NASA review, allowing it to move into the next phase of its design.

Blue Origin and Sierra Space, the lead partners on the Orbital Reef station, said Aug. 22 that the station passed a system definition review (SDR) with NASA. The review is part of a Commercial Low Earth Orbit Destinations, or CLD, award they received from the agency last December to mature the design of Orbital Reef.

The review, conducted between mid-June and mid-July, was intended to confirm that the Orbital Reef concept met various functional and performance requirements. Passing the review allows the companies to further develop the overall design of the space station.
Not sure where to put this, since it's still too vague to really justify its own thread so far. Anyways, BO is hiring and looking for people with experience in crewed spacecraft design.

Boeing is an official partner on Orbital Reef. It has a crewed spacecraft, Starliner, set to make its debut flight in April. But there are serious questions about Boeing's long-term commitment to Starliner beyond its seven contracted missions with NASA, in addition to concerns that its price will be about 50 percent higher than Dragon if it ever flies private astronauts. Blue Origin has also had some discussions with India about using its new crew capsule.

The best evidence that Blue Origin is serious about developing an orbital human spacecraft has come in recent job postings. For example, the company is seeking a leader for its "Space Vehicle Abort Thrusters Integrated Product Team" on LinkedIn. Among the preferred qualifications is "experience with human spaceflight or high-performance aircraft systems."

These images are from early 2012 and I would think that they've moved on considerably in the meantime.


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Frassanito and Associates had art of a longer craft...who commissioned that?
Frassanito and Associates had art of a longer craft...who commissioned that?
I don't know. I just found them in my digital scrapbook. Judging by the fact that there is a computational fluid dynamics simulation and a wind tunnel model, they were at some stage what Blue Origin was working on seriously before it got put aside for a decade.
Yes--that's the one.

That may just be showing off for their artists--but I could see this being launched as a command module for Mars.
The crew would be in capsule atop FH to transfer over.

The craft above would leave the NTR craft to do a more leisurely return.

@OrbitalReef paper just dropped
I'm always so excited when our teams at Blue get to share more about what they've been working on! read more below on the space station we're building :)

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