Building spaceships is expensive work. It sounds like the most obvious thing in the world, but it means that sometimes, the companies that build them have to find other ways to generate revenue. For the Sierra Nevada Corporation, makers of Dream Chaser spaceplane via their SierraSpace subsidiary, it looks like their finances are about to get considerably more stable.
What’s less well known is their endeavors in communications logistics technology intended to help armed forces communicate information safely and without interference. This venture has led to a new contract with the United States Army to manufacture the Next Generation Load Device-Medium (NGLD-M) program. This contract will pay out $775 million over the next decade.
According to Sierra Nevada Corporation, the NGLD-M will allow soldiers to communicate using cryptographic keys, a method of encryption that through the use of special codes, referred to as keys, that use a series of computer algorithms that are difficult for the enemy to decipher.
Using this system, soldiers in battlefield conditions can access Communication Security (COMSEC) products allowing for more smooth-lined communications and amplified security for Department of Defense (DOD) systems.
“SNC is honored to have delivered encryption key management capabilities to U.S. DOD and other customers for more than 18 years,” remarked CEO Fatih Ozmen. “Secure communications is critical to virtually every national security mission for every customer.”
The first mission of SRC’s Dream Chaser shuttle is slated to launch sometime in 2022. With the enormous cost overhead that comes with the territory in this manufacturing sector, lucrative contracts with deep-pocketed organizations like the U.S. military will ensure more ambitious projects are able to stay on schedule. An overall win-win situation for Sierra Nevada.