HUNTSVILLE, Ala. - Aerojet Rocketdyne broke ground on a brand new advanced manufacturing facility in Huntsville on Tuesday.
Governor Kay Ivey was in the Rocket City to speak at the ceremony. The new 136,000 sq. ft. facility on Pulaski Pike will produce products for the aerospace and defense sectors. Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle and other local dignitaries, as well as Aerojet Rocketdyne CEO and President Eileen Drake, also spoke at the groundbreaking.
Aerojet Rocketdyne earlier announced that it was headquartering its Defense business unit in Huntsville, along with its defense advanced programs group known as the Rocket Shop, bringing roughly 800 new jobs to the region.
In addition to the new manufacturing facility, Aerojet Rocketdyne recently leased 122,000 square feet of office space at 950 Explorer Blvd. in Cummings Research Park to accommodate newly hired employees and those relocating to Huntsville from other company locations. The changes are part of a larger Competitive Improvement Program the company launched in 2015 that is on track to deliver $230 million in annual savings once complete.
“The new Advanced Manufacturing Facility we are officially breaking ground on today is an essential component of Aerojet Rocketdyne’s Competitive Improvement Program,” said Aerojet Rocketdyne CEO and President Eileen Drake. “The steps we are taking are focused on making our company increasingly agile and able to deliver high-quality, affordable products to our customers as we position Aerojet Rocketdyne for the future.”
The new Advanced Manufacturing Facility, which is expected to begin production by the end of 2019, will be used to build a variety of aerospace products, including production work on the AR1 advanced rocket engine; composite cases for solid rocket motors; case pneumatic and hydrostatic proofing; and additive manufacturing (3-D printing) production work to support of a variety of programs in the space and defense sectors. This new facility will also be used to conduct advanced rocket propulsion research and development activities.
“Aerojet Rocketdyne has been a member of the Huntsville community for more than 50 years,” added Drake. “Our major expansion in this region that started in 2016 underscores Aerojet Rocketdyne’s belief that Huntsville, which is known as Rocket City, will continue to grow as a key aerospace and defense hub for our nation for many decades to come, and Aerojet Rocketdyne plans to be a leader in that growth.”
Aerojet Rocketdyne is a world-recognized aerospace and defense leader that provides propulsion and energetics to the space, missile defense and strategic systems, tactical systems and armaments areas, in support of domestic and international markets.