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Become a Flight Provider

Flight Opportunities rapidly demonstrates space technologies using commercial flight platforms, including rocket-powered suborbital vehicles, high-altitude balloons, aircraft flying parabolic trajectories, and platforms hosting payloads in orbit in cooperation with the Small Spacecraft Technology program.

More about current commercial flight platforms about Become a Flight Provider

Two Types of Commercial Collaboration

The program engages with commercial flight providers either by contracting with them directly to provide flight services, or by funding researchers to purchase flight services via successful TechFlights proposals.

NASA Flight Services Contracts

Suborbital/Hosted Orbital Flight and Payload Integration Services

Four people sit on the ground, working to attach payload hardware to a metal frame that is lifted to eye-level in preparation for integration on to a suborbital flight.
Orion Labs, winners of the NASA TechLeap Autonomous Observation Challenge, work to integrate their Quantum Earth Observatory payload ahead of their high-altitude balloon flight in June 2022.
Orion Labs/Margarita Reyes

Flight Opportunities released its Suborbital/Hosted Orbital Flight and Payload Integration Services 4 solicitation to industry, with the objective of identifying commercial providers to fly payloads in the relevant environments required to advance technologies’ readiness for use in future missions. This includes the use of suborbital vehicles as well as orbital platforms – in cooperation with NASA’s Small Spacecraft Technology program – to test payloads at high altitudes, under reduced gravity, in a vacuum, and in other challenging spaceflight conditions.

This new solicitation was designed to replace contracts for existing flight test services as well as add new capabilities, including hosting payloads in orbit and flying NASA researchers on suborbital flights. It aims to increase available testing options for researchers to advance their technologies and expand opportunities for a wider range of commercial companies to support suborbital and orbital flight testing for NASA. New contracts are anticipated to be in place by Q2 of FY2024.

Solicitation has closed.

Visit the full proposal page for more details.

Read the NASA announcement.

TechFlights Researcher Agreements

NASA TechFlights Solicitation: Leveraging Suborbital and Hosted Orbital Flight Providers 

Work directly with researchers proposing to NASA’s TechFlights solicitation to flight test space technologies.

Researchers from Purdue University on a parabolic flight conduct reduced gravity experiments on November 14, 2022, to help develop highly accurate models for the prediction of flow boiling rates to support in-space propellant transfer systems.
Researchers from Purdue University on a parabolic flight conduct reduced gravity experiments on November 14, 2022, to help develop highly accurate models for the prediction of flow boiling rates to support in-space propellant transfer systems.
Steve Boxall

When non-U.S. government researchers compete for funding through the Flight Opportunities program’s TechFlights solicitation, they can propose to use any eligible U.S.-based commercial provider. We encourage industry providers to review previous TechFlights solicitations to understand the eligibility requirements, and also to regularly engage directly with the researcher community so that potential TechFlights proposers the available capabilities and services available.