<img height="1" width="1" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=205228923362421&amp;ev=PageView &amp;noscript=1">

Destinations with Sierra Space.

What does the future of habitats in space look like? We speak to Shawn Buckley, Vice President of Destinations at Sierra Space to hear their vision.



Deep Space


Humanity has long imagined what living in space looks like. We’ve seen it in Sci-Fi movies, series and graphic novels but science fiction will soon become science reality. What do the future habitats in space look like? We speak to Shawn Buckley, Vice President of Destinations at Sierra Space to hear their vision.

You can connect with Shawn on LinkedIn and learn more about Sierra Space’s Destinations on their website.

Our 2024 N2K CyberWire Audience Survey is underway, make your voice heard and get in the running for a $100 Amazon gift card. Remember to leave us a 5-star rating and review in your favorite podcast app.

Remember to leave us a 5-star rating and review in your favorite podcast app. 

Miss an episode? Sign up for our weekly intelligence briefing, Signals and Space, and you’ll never miss a beat.

Audience Survey

We want to hear from you! Please complete our 4 question survey. It’ll help us get better and deliver you the most mission-critical space intel every day.

Want to hear your company in the show?

You too can reach the most influential leaders and operators in the industry. Here’s our media kit. Contact us at space@n2k.com to request more info.

Want to join us for an interview?

Please send your pitch to space-editor@n2k.com and include your name, affiliation, and topic proposal.

T-Minus is a production of N2K Networks, your source for strategic workforce intelligence. © 2023 N2K Networks, Inc.

[MUSIC] Humanity has long imagined what living in space might look like. We've seen it in sci-fi movies, series, and graphic novels. But science fiction will soon become science reality, as space companies today are developing the next generation of places in space where humans will work and live, informs that might surprise you. So what do future human habitats in space look like? [MUSIC] Welcome to T-Minus Deep Space from N2K Networks. I'm Maria Varmazes. Our guest today is Sean Buckley, Vice President of Destinations at Sierra Space. Sierra Space is building large integrated flexible environment habitats known as life. Their vision is to reshape how humans live and work in space. [MUSIC] We're doing all things space, Leo, Sis Luna, Luna, Deep Space. It's exciting times, and I'm excited to be here. I mean, this is amazing, like a dream come true. So Sean, before we get into the cool stuff that you're working on now, for me, because I like learning about the people I'm speaking to, can you tell me about like your career? How you ended up at Sierra? Like just kind of walk me through it. Bragg a bit. I took a road probably less traveled than most. I started out my career working in an architectural firm. The place was called Atlandia Design, and they were the design arm for the Golden Nugget years and years ago when the Golden Nugget hotels were being designed. And I was lucky enough to work there for about 12 years moving through different positions throughout the company. Had some amazing mentors that taught me everything about architecture, about structures, about HVAC, mechanical, electrical, engineering. And I did their animations and built their 3D models and worked on their first run concepts for what like the exterior the hotel would look like and different things like that. And then from there, I spent 12 years and then I started my own business. Had my own business for another about 16 years, which was Pentagon Studios, and we did basically the same thing. We did 3D animations, we did renderings, we did architecture development, we did sales studios, things like that. And then as fate would have it in 2008 when the economy took an incredible great spin, no, it was a terrible spin when it dropped down. I took a position over at Bigelow Aerospace and I always had an affinity or a love for space. And I got the chance to work at an amazing place by an amazing gentleman that ran at Robert Bigelow, just an incredible future thinker, right? Just thinking of things beyond what the normal person would look like, a visionary. And working for this visionary, I got a chance to discover soft goods and habitation. And I just thought, what an amazing type of technology and that you can put it in space. So I always tell everybody, I leverage what I looked on when I learned on buildings terrestrially. So you have to do structures, walls, you got to have, you know, your temperature, your air in there, your air conditioning. It's the same thing you have to do in space, except it's the harshest environment known to mankind. So if you're going to design something in Florida, it's different than you can design something in Alaska. Or if you're going to design something in Europe, there's different building codes, there's different ways you have to approach everything. So I took that background and then I focused on what I could do with aerospace. And I looked at what one of their main technologies was, which is soft goods. And I thought, you know, I think someone should become the expert at this. Like someone should really dive deep into this and figure it out. And I said, well, that should be me. So I really focused on how do you develop habitats, working with NASA, understanding requirements, same thing we do in architecture, understanding building codes and requirements and structures and weight and loads and all that. I applied it to what I was doing there. And again, had an incredible series of mentors, which really knew a lot about aerospace. So I spent 12 years at Bigel Air. So you're going to start adding the decades up and realize how old I am. I'm doing the math right now. It's okay. I spent 12 years at Bigel Airspace. The last six is their vice president of soft goods and then their deputy program manager for their B330. So basically I had the privilege to run their soft goods development, along with being part of the B330 program and then being part of BEAM, the Bigel O Expandable Activity Module, which went on the International Space Station. I was a team member on that working with some incredible brilliant minds at both NASA and Bigel Airspace. And then as big would have it, you know, Bigel Airspace aside to close down for whatever reason it was in 2020. And I took a little bit of a break for a little while, kind of thought about how hard I had worked throughout my life. And I said, do I want to go back to work? Do I want to kind of chill for a bit? And I put it out there on LinkedIn and I just got an overwhelming response. It was, I mean, I feel really humbled by the amount of companies that reached out to me. And one of them was Lockheed Martin. So I went to work for Lockheed Martin, moved from Las Vegas to Denver, which I still am in Denver and I'm in love with Denver. And I went there as their chief technologist in their advanced programs division focusing on habitation and standing up there soft goods and their habitation and a series of individuals from Bigel Airspace went over there with me. We did a fantastic job. It's been about two years there. And then Sierra space. And I had always watched Sierra space doing inflatables. And I was always going, please don't be successful. Please don't be successful. Please don't be successful. From the other side. Yeah. From the other side. I'm like, oh, I wish you, you know, fail. Yeah, you failed. This is awesome. We have the best technology. And then I saw the series of funding and I saw it, Sierra space broke off. And then I saw that Tom vice. So we had been in communications back and forth for, you know, months and months and months. And finally had the opportunity of just going to work for Sierra space. And they said, come on over as your chief, as a chief engineer for our habitation program. And I thought, wow, this is fantastic. I've held the role of a chief technologist. I've been a program manager. I've been a engineering supervisor. I've been blah, blah, blah, these different things. And now I get to be a chief engineer. Wow. I mean, in the aerospace world, a chief engineer is like, you know, they're the highest engineering level. I didn't realize that I walked into a room and the whole room got quiet. I'm like, why, why is it quiet? Who's in here? Who should I be looking for? And they're like, it's you. It's you. Okay. I didn't realize that I'm just Sean. Relax, everybody. This is going to be good. And then I spent, I spent about a year doing that. And then I moved more towards a chief technologist role with inside the group. We did a little reorganization as you always do to get more efficient. And then recently, I've been able to get the position of actually running the division, which is destinations within CSERA space. So CSERA space has three pillars. The three pillars are, you know, you have transportation, you have destinations, and then you have applications. So basically, applications, if you think about it builds everything that's inside our space systems inside the dream chaser, inside the habitat. And they, they really focus on our OMS, our, our satellite division. They do a fantastic job. You've heard a couple of the recent rewards, awards that we've gotten. And then you have transportation, obviously dream chaser plane, which is absolutely fantastic, right? Revolutionized land on land on runways. It's just, you look at, you think shuttle, right? And then you just think advanced technologies of what the shuttle was doing and its capabilities are phenomenal. And then you have destinations, which I now get a chance to lead, which is everything space in space, right? Wherever you're going to live, whether it's metallic habitats or it's soft goods habitats, whether it's going to be in Leo or Lunar surface, I get a chance to work with some amazing people, which are much smarter than I am. And they're just an amazing team. And we just do really cool stuff. We blow things up, we design things, we make stuff, we blow it up again, and then we design some more. And by the way, they tell you, we blow things up. And we keep pressing. But we just do some amazing things at pressing technology. That's where I'm at now. So vice president of destinations. And the good and the bad, the team gets to work with an individual who's worked on a lot of these programs and habitation for over 15 years. That's the good news. The bad news is I've been a chief engineer, I've been a chief technologist, and I've been a program manager. So when we go into a room and they're talking about engineering and like, Sean's got a background or they talk about technology. Sean's got an opinion. I tried to put the hat on. Like I tried to open up to be a program manager and I'm like, oh, that's cool. How did you make that? Well, did you try this? So I've got to temper that down a little bit. So that's my background. That's tough. But I mean, oh my gosh, I, and I didn't go to college. So just got to let you know that one too. I don't have a degree in anything. I have OJT. Yeah, literally just, if you talk to my wife, she'll just say, you know, 50 to 60 hours a week, I just dive into everything that I can dive into. And I just eat it like candy. I just love the challenges and anything that's new or new tech or something that you're going to be challenged on. I just want to go for it. I live by the saying you have to be uncomfortable. You have to be comfortable with being uncomfortable. So just, just go for it. And if you fail, you fall on the ground. That's okay. Just pick yourself back up. I mean, the attitude is everything. Some of the smartest engineers I've known also do not have college degrees. I mean, really, I mean, I love that you shared that. And I've known other engineers of your vice president now. But oh yeah. Let me sit up. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I mean, honestly, the engineering mind said it will carry you so far. And congratulations on your promotion. That is really exciting. I appreciate it. I'm a tanker. I like to tinker with things. I grew up working on farms. We took everything apart. We put everything together. I grew up with an amazing single mom and it was basically we were poor and we didn't buy new. We fixed it. So if you wanted to watch, she wanted to watch the Tom Jones show. I used to have to hold that rabbit ears while she would sit there and just stare at the TV at Tom Jones. I think she was in a coma. She's like, oh my God, get a better picture. I'm like, okay, mom, you got it. I also remember holding rabbit ears. It was not my favorite thing. I was the youngest in my family. So I was the one stuck standing there. And they're like, just stay there for an hour. I'm the youngest. Grab the rabbit ears. I'm like, seriously, it's Friday night. Now we're watching TV. I can't see it. Like I'm looking over at the sign of it. And I didn't want to watch Tom Jones anyway. We had three channels. I mean, you had Tom Jones, you had some nightly news and something else. I was like, there's nothing on TV. So no, not, not for us. No, it was just the antenna holders. Yes, I relate. But I, your journey is amazing. Thank you for sharing it. What I love asking people about their career journey is it is amazing. When you look back on it, how things build to get to where you are now. But I'm sure as you're going on it, you're like, I'm just, I'm doing this thing. I'm directing myself in a certain way, but who knows where this is going to take me? I mean, my family goes, what are you doing now? I'm not on a space station. So I go, come on, seriously. I'm like designing hotels across Vegas, which has been like 3000 rooms and a million square feet. And you're building something in space. Like, yeah, yeah, doing something space. Kind of interesting. And I got one up there. Dad's an astronaut. No, no, no, no, no, no. Yeah. That's what I want to be, but you know, it could still happen. I'm just saying, I mean, if you know, I figure, I figure the guy who's building and designing the have, if you can't say that you want to go up in it, you're probably not doing a good job. So when somebody asks me, Sean, do you want to go up in the habit that you're does? I'm like, Oh yeah, 100%. You know, and they kind of shows them a little bit of credit. Like, you know, Hey, listen, he wants to go up in the habitat. Then off the side, he feels good. Exactly. Yeah. Like, no, you guys do that. No, no. I mean, I just have to say on the on the macro level, the fact that it's destinations with an S, as you mentioned, there's more than one that Sierra is working on on on on its own. Is I'm just like, what a great time to be alive that that that is the discussion right now. I need to be part of orbital reef. Right. I mean, that's that's an incredible, incredible program to do and to be building and designing our space station, right, which is absolutely amazing. And then to be looking at, you know, things in this lunar right. So at Gateway, so NASA Gateway is doing on there, looking at how can we service Gateway? What can we do for Gateway and how can we work with NASA on that? And then, you know, on the lunar surface, you know, you're thinking about how do you occupy the lunar surface? How do you do something on that surface, which is obviously one of the most challenging environments that you can have. You know, we believe our inflatable technologies along with what we're designing as far as the support systems are really a viable product. You launch small, it's low in mass, low in weight, and then you can land and you inflate it and you have all this volume. And anytime you're going to discover a new place in the world, talk about the settlers, right, going across the United States, they brought a wagon with them. You know, how do you bring a wagon with you to the moon? Conestoga wagon in space. And then how do you have an establishment settlement so that you have a place to stop as a waypoint? If you travel across the United States, you had these little cabins or these little stop places, which were your convenience store, your grocery store, wherever you would stop, and you'd pick up your supplies for the next journey. When we go to the lunar surface and you land on the lunar surface with a lander, you need a place that you can stay at, which should be an inflatable. Hello, it's the best technology in the world. And then, but when you embark out of there, you want to be able to go to another waypoint, which you're going to get power, which you're going to get supplies, which you're going to get whatever you need. This is really what we're looking at, the build that ecosystem, which is on the lunar surface. And all the testing we've been doing at subscale and all the testing we're doing at full scale is building up that complete product line to show how we can apply it to this lunar and lunar and the lunar surface and deep space, obviously. So yeah, just a great time. I mean, I just designed stuff all day long. Well, the team designs it. They keep me away from designing it now. They're doing this. They've been pushing you away. Like, no, no. I asked for drawings yesterday. You're like, why do you want drawings? I said, I want a red line. I'm they're like, why are you red lining drawings? I'm like, oh, that's right. I forgot. I'm program management. I should be looking at financial files and schedules. Let me split the time. Yeah, but the cool stuff, you want to look at the cool stuff. I mean, the cool factor, I told them over, but you can see they're all sitting there. I mean, they're ready to be looked at. These are all drawings I want to look at. So yeah, I mean, that cool factor of like, you're building what you're making, what happened? I mean, when I explained to my six-year-old about inflatable like habitats, I mean, her eyes just lit up like we could we're doing what? I mean, I imagine you have that moment all the time given what you're working on. My nephews. I have two nephews. They're Grayson and Liam. And they're absolutely phenomenal nephews. And one of them, I was, we had them watch the videos. And one was like, oh, that's really great, Uncle Shon, you're doing, you know what? You're a YouTube star. I'm like, well, hold on a second. Not, I'm not a YouTube star. I mean, look at the technology we're developing. And it kept going on about your YouTube star. You're, we got 1.5 million views or whatever it was. I was like, this is amazing. And we talk about that kind of stuff. Like what is, what inspires you? Like, when I, when I think about like everything that you do, right? I mean, you can tell your passionate about what you do, right? You have a great time. You're enjoying this. I'm going to do a job that I love because I'm going to do what I love and love what I do. I want to put a, I want to put a space station space, you know, and I want to put multiple ones up there. And I'm going to work and work and work and work until we can get that done. And the fantastic part about what I do is my wife asked me out, you know, a couple of weeks ago, we were having some conversations. It's like, I don't really feel like I work. Like I feel like I get to, like evolve designs and create things. And I want to wake up super early in the morning. Like I have to stop myself sometimes and go, you know what? It's 430. Oh, I could go look at this or look at what they designed or check out what they did. I'm like, don't you think you sleep a little bit? Like maybe you should lay down a little bit longer. You went to bed at midnight. You're answering emails. It's a running joke with the team. Like there is going to get an email from me at one o'clock in the morning and then it'll get emailed for me from 430 because I'm just, there is so much good data that the team is making that my job is to respond. And I have to respond so they can keep moving forward. I'm not the bottleneck. And I feel that responsibility on my shoulders. So when I see the inbox building up and I see all the great designs are doing, I just want to answer and answer and even if I just say, hey, great job, keep going or give them an inspirational quote or, or tell them, hey, maybe go to the left or go to the right or go forward or go backwards. The art of response is a responsibility that we all have to have when you're in a leadership position. So if we're responding at 11 o'clock at night or responding at 430 in the morning, the goal is to respond and inspire that keep moving forward. Right? Yeah, that momentum, you want to keep that going. And again, given what you all are working on, I mean, I just keep going back to like, I was fangirling over you earlier, I pardon me, but I also couldn't help it. I mean, it is that like, this is so stinkin' cool what you're doing. And also, I mean, not everybody gets to say they're working on more than one of these at the same time, but also just the designs are so cool. I mean, just, I know nothing about architecture. I'm just a newb on any of that stuff. And I just look at it, I'm like, wow, we can really, that's really like, that's a viable thing that we can do. I never thought that such a thing could be possible. It's pretty trippy. Like you look at it, you're like, well, wait a second. You're taking soft goods and you're putting around some kind of shell and you're gonna, you're pressurizing it in space and we're going to live in it. Are you sure you know what you're doing? I mean, I'm so, are you sure? You know, is it like my shirt? And I'm like, whoa. To me, it's like, it opens up this realm of possibilities that like I had never considered was ever even possible. And it just makes me go like, what else haven't we ever thought of that we could actually do? Oh my gosh, like human beings are so amazing. So the easy part, when I always tell everybody, the easy part is at least on our side, because of the technology, the skill set and the people we brought on board, we have former NASA engineers which have worked on structures we're doing for 30 years. I mean, they're on board with us. We have a team of amazing young engineers, which for the past two and a half years, we have just, you know, given them a deluge of information so that they can keep growing. And we're at a point now where I wasn't in meeting the other day and I'm sitting in there and I was thinking about what I would give as far as input. I'm like, they got it. I mean, our job is to make sure they have that right that next generation. You'll see in the videos, we have a series of individuals, you know, Beth like Avoli right now, which is, which is running some of our soft goods and testing. We've got Leanne Thompson working on things. We just have all these different people, Gracie, we have Austin Carrivers, our program manager, all these different people. When I came on board, had a touch of what we were doing. But two and a half years later, they are, I mean, I sit back in awe at watching what they're doing. And that's part of what we got to do, right? You got to keep growing that, that, that next generation, that engineering, I'm going to age myself again, that next generation of engineers and who are supposed to be carrying the torch and moving on. I just think it's, it's awesome to see and power up, right? Give them the power to make decisions and go forward. It's fantastic. Oh, I can hear that. I can hear that in your voice. And that's so great. It's so great to hear honestly, because it's a, the flip side of the conversation I often have with other folks is like, you know, we're not getting folks in the pipeline and the workforce issues. And it's like, funding is terrible. My schedule is so hard. And the architecture is so different. You know what? It is all tough. It is all really hard. There's nothing easy about what we do, about what we do because there, and that's why there's so few companies that can do it. But if you embrace it with an attitude that you can do it, you can get it done. I mean, if you look at all the amazing people in the world over time, over, over humans existence, if everybody looked at it and said, that's really tough. I don't want to try it. Well, then there wouldn't be any airplanes or wouldn't be any boats or wouldn't be any, there wouldn't be rocket ships or wouldn't be, you know, electric cars. There wouldn't be any of the cool technology that's out there. So when we form as a team, you want to look at what's impossible and then go figure it out. I mean, and find the most simplest basic way to approach something. Part of what we design with soft goods is based off of technology that's been around for 2000 years. So if this technology has been around for 2000 years, how can you use it in space? And it's, you know, it's basket, right? And how do you, how do they do baskets and move things around for years? It's, it's so basic and so simple, but you apply it to the harshest, hardest environment in the world. Then we bring on really smart people, our MMP material and process individuals. They have the amazing job to select the materials that we're going to use and go test the materials and say, Hey, team, we have these materials you can use and they build it into an architecture. And then when you see it come together, you're like, wow, this is awesome. I mean, this is just, I mean, we're doing another burst test. It's going to happen in June. And we just finished that full scale one at the end of the year, last year, six months later, we got another one. I mean, it's, the team moves fast. We have an amazing team. It's unbelievable. We'll be right back after this quick break. Often I ask people, you know, like, what are you excited about? And I feel like that would be a really stupid question because it sounds like everything would be the answer. So it's like, everything, I mean, Sean, I'm like, well, that's awesome. How did you design this? What did you do? How'd you get it done? And like, I slow down your program manager right now. Great. Was that done in budget and schedule? And then back to my mind, I'm like, this is awesome. I love that. I love that. We need that. We can't forget how cool this is. But like, we can't forget how cool this is and what you're building. Like that you don't want to ever lose sight of that passion. That's what really drives us. And I'm thinking like, you, of all the people I've spoken to, you probably have one of the best views of like this larger ecosystem that you're, we're building. I'm honestly really, truly, I mean, because literally, thank you. For real. Some people say it's crazy. But, you know, I, I believe I, there's a bunch of sayings, you'll hear me say it. There's one that I learned years ago and they said, if people are not asking you if your idea is crazy, then it's not crazy enough. Like, you know, when they, if they look at you and they go, well, that's crazy, then you're like, okay, good, they're getting it. But if they're not asking you if it's crazy, then it's not crazy enough. And that, to me, that equates push the technology envelope, figure out how you can, again, keep it simple, keep it straightforward, look at the history that's been done, tweak it a little bit, and then go apply it. And when I see the tweaks that the team does, you know, I have the benefit of being able to see that. And it brought to me and shown to me their hard work, their labor, their diving deep into it, the hours they spend on the analysis, the calculations, the background. I'm not in that. What I'm in is when they deliver that product. So for me, you have to respect that, right? When you get into a meeting and you can, anybody can jump in and give an opinion, but it's very difficult for someone to jump in and lessen and then to sit there and soak it, and then listen to listen, don't listen to speak. And that's so important. And then when you do compliment, don't just say, good job. Say, that was a great design on that bulkhead. And I thought the way that you put together the interface was phenomenal because you listen then. It's not that, hey, good job. And you high five them. That's great. Everybody wants kudos, but your job is to dive into it a little bit, right? And soak it in and then give that compliment or give that criticism in the most productive way that you can. So, Sean, for the edification of our listeners who may not know what you mean by soft goods, because I have a generalized idea, but I could actually be wrong what I'm assuming. So could you define it for me? Sure. When we say soft goods, when it relates to space habitation, it's really advanced materials that we're applying to survive in space. Sear space, we talk about, I go from what's called the inner mold line, so IML, to the outer mold line. So what inner mold line is, whatever the astronauts or inhabitants are going to touch, we have what's called an atmospheric barrier. So when you see us in flight, it requires something that can allow that air not to penetrate. So it has to have a low penetration value. So that soft goods is that first liner that we're going to do. So when you pressurize with the atmosphere, if you're going to be like the international space station, 14.7 PSI, you'll pressurize, and then it's going to force us off because to expand. When you see our burst testing, you're going to see something that looks like it's woven together. It's made out of Vectran, and Vectran is a chemically spun polyacronome. So basically this material is developed in its strands, and then we take it and have it weaved, and then it's put into a basket form. And then that basket form creates this incredible architecture we have, really strength. We work with one of our partners, ILC Dover. We work together on the architecture, the design, and then the manufacturing and we put it together. So we want to leverage their expertise in the soft goods world, and then obviously the individuals that we've brought on board to enhance that expertise and to create this good synergy between the two companies. Then outside of that is a layer of MMOD. It's called Micrometeor Orbital Debris Shield. A lot of words. Okay, yep. But a lot of people are going to have that question. So yes. A lot of people are going to ask, right? So when you're in space and you have all that debris that's hitting it, what we do, depending upon where we've placed the space station, we run what's called Orbital Debris Models. We work with NASA and called Orbital Models. And it tells you where the debris is in space and how many times it's going to hit your habitat and what's going to hit it or whatever you have in space. And then we want what's called PMP, Probability of No Penetration. So this is going to tell you what's the probability of that hitting there a number of times over years based on mission duration. So we design this multi-layer shock shield, which can stop any debris in space. So the outer layer hits it, hits it, outer layer, and it destroys it. So it fractures the piece. And then these other layers that are in there catch it. As it goes through it, it catches. And we put space between layers because if you take basic momentum, you want to slow down the momentum as the first piece hits, and then you want to slow it down to the next, to the next, to the next. So we've designed this type of shield that we'll use. And then on the top, outside of that, you got to stay nice and warm, right? Or you got to stay nice and cool. We have what's called a multi-layer insulation blanket. Basically it's your thermal blanket. No magic here. It's standard MLI blankets, which has been created for years. But when you take and put all these layers together, the magic of this or the secret sauce that we have is how do those layers react to each other? How do you pack it around a core, like pack it nice and tight, launch it in a 5 meter, 7 meter, 9 meter faring. And then when it goes in space, lack of a better term, you press a button, and then it's got to pressurize and expand. And when it pressurizes and expands, it gives you this increased volume. So as an example, when we launch the life habitat, it'll launch roughly 40 to 50 cubic meters in volume because it's packed. When we get it in space, it's 285 plus cubic meters. So you launch really small, you get large volume in space. And that large volume in space helps you sustain that 15-year mission because you can place your crew quarters in there, your exercising in there, your science and biopharma experiments, your microgravity that worked that you're going to do inside there, your manufacturing that's going to happen in there. Basically, it allows you to create the next industrial revolution. You can take the soft goods, you can take the core structure, you can take everything that's being designed as far as drugs or as far as advanced manufacturing, put it in space, and get a different element. Things fuse together differently. And you're going to see a lot of this over the next decade on how Sierra Space leverages this technology that's terrestrially developed. We're going to place it in space, and we're going to develop the next cure for cancer. We're going to develop the next printed tissue that's up there. We have teaming partners that we're working with, Red Wire and other companies. And these companies have these advanced solutions. And what we're doing is integrating them into our ecosystem. And as they're integrated into the ecosystem, we partner it up and then we put it up in space. And then we're able to get incredible synergies. So again, think about it. We have the application team, which is designed and develops all our systems internally. And of course, we have outside vendors and partners we work with. We have the Dream Chaser, which takes you and transports you up there. We have the destination for you go, and then you transport it back down. So a complete ecosystem that Sierra Space is driving. There's really no company that has what we have in this place. But that's the background on soft goods and basically overall what we're doing. What an elegant explanation that was. I just have to compliment you on that. I've done it a few times. I can tell. I can tell. But it still, it is, I have to compliment you. It was very elegant. Because it does, the word ecosystem was exactly the one that I was thinking of as well. It really does make a lot of sense. What has often struck me also about when I've seen the inflatable, like the models of them, the quality of life also for the crew. In addition to all the things you've mentioned, just like how much it just, they're not in a metal tube in space anymore. We have an amazing astronaut, Tom Washburn, who's on our team. So he's at Sierra Space. And he is critically important as part of what we're doing. And his feedback has been so valuable to us. And he walks in there. I think he said it a couple of times because you never get an astronaut that'll complain, wow, that's too much space. Hey, you gave me way too much space. This house is way too big. I don't think we should be up here. They want the room to stretch and to be able to do things and do other stuff. So yeah, really appreciate it. I mean, I think the designs that we're doing, I mean, we're testing what we call life 285. We're testing that in June. But at the first of next year, our goal is to test life 500. So we're going to go from 285 cubic meters to 500 cubic meters. That's pretty much the biggest that I've ever seen, ever know of and have ever been involved in in testing. I have a test. So this is a real challenge. The team team's got a challenge ahead of them. But like I said, we got great partners that we're working with and obviously the internal team. So I could probably talk to you for hours, honestly. I'm like, I have so many questions. But, but I have so many answers. I know, I know you do. And I know, and you would, you would indulge me. And that's really kind of you. And I really appreciate that I can just, I can just tell how much you love what you do. And it's so, it's so nice to speak to someone who really enjoys their job like you do. And is also working on solving such fascinating problems and making tomorrow possible. So I know I said I wouldn't fangirl over you too much, but I totally did. So I appreciate that. It's just really cool. Sean, is there anything that you wanted to mention before we close out? Because I probably should let you go. I know. I was saying do I have anything else? I can imagine someone's, I'm getting pinged. I can see the other. Hey, where are you? Are you coming with me? Are you doing this? I'm like, Hey, you're not important. Come on. I'm talking cool stuff right now. You guys can wait. You're VP now. I got to let you go. You guys can wait. Oh no, they can wait. There's 24 hours a day and I'm willing to work 18 to 20 of those. So if it means I got to take 30 minutes on here. And again, I don't know if it's work because when I sit working on things at night, I'm like, Oh, this is so cool. I'm looking at this. Wow. I'm leaning this. Oh, that's great. It was, I'll tell you, I'll close this out. I had a funny story that day. We're talking about something internally and they were going through the meeting and figuring out who was going to have the authority on it. And I was sitting in the room going, yeah, I don't know who approves this. Who does this? And I went, that's me. I was kind of like, wait a second. I got to take a different view of this. I didn't need to write down what's going on here. It was so funny. I said, I don't know if I was in the meeting and I said it because I was like sitting here and I went, oh, I got caught myself because I was like, wait a second. I was like, no, I got to change here. I should be more stoic. I should be like, Oh, that's an interesting concept. Let's see what we do next with this. Programmatically, I think our approach should be, you know, I was, yeah, it was very funny. What I could leave you with is I think in life, we all have challenges that approach us, right? The road is, the road is never easy on how we have to travel. And I've had my ups and downs and failed businesses and things moving forward. And technologies have not worked. But I have always said that if you run into those areas where you see there's no light at the end of the tunnel, you have to find the light. You got to figure out a way to enjoy what you do. Keep a smile on your face and laugh a little bit and enjoy it. I mean, you got to be serious when it's time to be serious. And you have to make those hard decisions every single day. But if you can't at the end of it, laugh a little bit and really enjoy your job. What are you doing? I mean, I can't be there if I'm not enjoying what I'm doing. And there are challenges. I just make sure that I try to laugh as many times during the day as I can and smile as much as I can smile and just really enjoy your doing and eat lunch. I mean, that's one of those other things I really got to do. So that's really what I would leave you with. I think if everybody took on those challenges and took ownership for what they do, the world would be a different place. You have to just, you have to own it. And I love owning the good, the bad and the ugly because that's what we have to do. So, and again, privilege to be with Sierra Space. I mean, there are an incredible support system and the vision that we have from the CEO down and from our investors is just amazing. It's the reason why I'm here. So, I mean, I love the job. [Music] That's it for T-Minus Deep Space, brought to you by N2K Cyberwire. We'd love to know what you think of this podcast. You can email us at space@n2k.com or submit the survey in the show notes. Your feedback ensures that we deliver the information that keeps you a step ahead in the rapidly changing space industry. T-Minus Deep Space is produced by Alice Kavuth. Our associate producer is Liz Stokes. We are mixed by Elliot Peltzman and Trey Hester, with original music by Elliot Peltzman. Our executive producer is Jennifer Iben. Our executive editor is Brandon Karp. Simone Petrella is our president. Peter Kilpie is our publisher and I'm your host, Maria Varmasus. Thanks for listening. We'll see you next time. [Music] (gentle music)

Similar posts

Stay in the loop on new releases. 

Subscribe below to receive information about new blog posts, podcasts, newsletters, and product information.