Colorado companies, United Launch Alliance & Sierra Nevada Corporation, launching space flights

DENVER - When you think about space, you may not think about Colorado, but two Colorado companies are working with NASA to launch payloads and people into space.

- United Launch Alliance

Thursday, United Launch Alliance launched an Atlas V rocket from Cape Canavaral, Florida. The rocket is taking a tracking and data relay satellite into space for NASA.

ULA's program management, engineering, test, and mission support functions are headquartered in Denver.

Thursday's launch was the 78th launch for the company in the last seven years. The company has 15 launches planned for 2014.

- Sierra Nevada Corp.

Louisville-based Sierra Nevada Corporation announced this week that the first orbital flight of its Dream Chaser  Space System will occur on November 1, 2016. 

The Dream Chaser is a reusable spaceship being developed to take astronauts to the International Space Station.

When it is launched in 2016, it will be brought to orbit on a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket.

The Space Shuttle program ended in 2011.

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