Press Release

Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance Announces Sierra Nevada Corporation will speak at Defense Conference in Seattle

By SpaceRef Editor
August 29, 2014
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SEATTLE, WA – August 20, 2014 – Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance announced today that Mark Sirangelo, head of Sierra Nevada Corporation’s Space Systems (SNC), will be the keynote speaker at its October 8 Defense, Space & Security Conference in Seattle.  Sirangelo has helped to build and grow a product portfolio ranging from small satellites to space technologies that have enabled over 420 planetary missions — including Mars Curiosity.

Sierra Nevada is a top contender for a lucrative contract with NASA to transport astronauts and cargo to the International Space Station.  Since 2011, when NASA officially ended its space shuttle program, Americans have relied on the Russians for these services.  Later this year, NASA will award one or more contracts to companies that can safely provide the agency with transportation services by December 2017.

Sierra Nevada’s Dream Chaser, a reusable, winged spaceplane capable of a vertical take-off and horizontal landing, is competing head to head with Boeing’s CST-100, a reusable, weldless capsule design, and SpaceX’s Dragon, the first commercial spacecraft in history to deliver cargo to the International Space Station and safely return cargo to Earth.  SpaceX will also send a speaker to the one-day conference.

“PNAA is honored that one of the Space Industry’s leading contenders for NASA’s Commercial Crew Program will provide our keynote address. Mark Sirangelo’s participation demonstrates the caliber of information attendees can expect to hear at this conference,” said PNAA Executive Director Bob Uptagrafft.  

In addition to Sirangelo’s keynote address, leading defense industry speakers will discuss how global policy changes, declining procurement budgets and life extensions on legacy aircraft are creating new opportunities for aerospace and defense manufactures and suppliers. The one-day aerospace conference will analyze defense, space and UAV market trends; explore how shrinking budgets, enhanced ISR capabilities and production delays are creating supply chain opportunities; and explain what increasingly sophisticated cyber campaigns will mean for regional aerospace businesses. 

 “As governments around the globe reconfigure budgets to match new defense and security postures and  new factors threaten to affect international space programs, supply chain opportunities are changing rapidly,” said PNAA’s Chief Operating Officer Melanie Jordan. 

“PNAA is assembling an unrivaled line up of industry experts to explain how these changes will impact regional businesses.   Whether you supply parts for commercial or military jets, restore legacy aircraft, manufacture satellites and sensors or are considering expanding your reach into unmanned systems, you won’t want to miss this conference.  It will provide the information and contacts you need for success now and in the future,” Jordan said.

PNAA’s Conference features 13 industry speakers including Congressional Research Service Military Analyst JJ Gertler; Boeing’s Director, Business Development KC-46 Tanker Program Boeing Military Aircraft Jim Eisenhart; Sierra Nevada Corporation’s Space Systems Corporate Vice President

Mark Sirangelo; SpaceX’s Senior Director of Avionics Hardware Development Brandon Pearce; Janicki Industries’ President John Janicki; Cascade Aerospace’s CEO Benjamin Boehm; Planetary Resources’ Vice President of Space Development Chris Voorhees; Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Executive Director Roger Myers; 406 Space Systems and 406 Aerospace’s co-founder and CEO Ehson Mosleh; Guardtime’s Chief Technology Officer Matthew Johnson; G2 Solutions’ CEO Michel Merluzeau; Washington State’s Director of Aerospace Alex Pietsch; G2 Solutions’ Research Director Ron Stearns ; Cascade AUVSI/Arcturus UAV President Eric Folkestad and others.

Conference Topics Include:

The state of the defense industry

New opportunities in space

Cyber security: The gap in mission assurance 

Developments in the domestic and international UAV marketplace

Legacy Programs: Creating profitable MRO opportunities in engines, avionics & aerostructures

Future Think: How changes in today’s defense, space & security industries will launch tomorrow’s opportunities for success.

PNAA’s Defense, Space and Security Conference is from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. on October 8 at the Museum of Flight in Seattle. For more information or to register: or 425-885-0290 or

About PNAA: Pacific Northwest Aerospace Alliance is a coalition of aerospace companies dedicated to promoting the growth and success of the region’s most important industry.  For over 13 years, PNAA has provided programs that deliver market intelligence and business networking opportunities to strengthen and enhance the aerospace community.  Our members represent every segment of the industry and are responsible for designing, manufacturing and supplying parts for companies across the globe.

SpaceRef staff editor.