Sierra Nevada Corporation’s (SNC) new commercial space subsidiary Sierra Space and mission-critical space solutions provider Redwire have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for in-space manufacturing (ISM) and services.

In ISM, research, development, manufacturing and production operations are shifted to a microgravity environment.

Companies in the ISM industry can host these operations in a 27ft-diameter LIFE habitat module, which is equivalent to three stories of workspace in space.

These modules can also be docked to a Sierra Space commercial space station’s multi-habitat configuration to use only power, communications, environmental control and transportation services.

Such efficiencies and capabilities that ISM offers cannot be availed with terrestrial-based manufacturing methods.

SNC president and owner Eren Ozmen said: “The market demand for a ‘space-as-a-service’ business model, offering space transportation, destinations and infrastructure, is truly exciting.

“We provide the versatility and affordability that allow ISM companies to scale operations in the new space economy.

“The Sierra Space LIFE habitat provides an integrated, flexible and expandable workspace for the many industries, including manufacturing, that can benefit from zero gravity.”

SNC transferred its space business to Sierra Space earlier this month.

The company also revealed its plans to develop the first free-flying commercial space station in low-Earth orbit.

The modular and flexible station will feature multiple LIFE habitats and docking ports for Dream Chaser spacecraft and other modules.

Sierra Space has also signed commercial agreements across diverse industries, including space-enabled manufacturing, biopharma research, on-orbit satellite servicing assembly and manufacturing, and microgravity research.