Lockheed Martin to build $350M futuristic satellite factory – PA home page

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) - Lockheed Martin is spending large cash to build the following technology of satellites.

The protection and aerospace firm introduced Wednesday that it has began constructing a $350 million facility on its Waterton Canyon campus close to Denver, Colorado. It is a new 266,000-square-foot "factory of the long run" that Lockheed Martin says will permit it to make satellites sooner and for much less cash.

The corporate is a stalwart presence within the satellite and area industries. Proper now, for instance, it is making GPS III satellites for the U.S. Air Power and a Mars lander for NASA.

However it's touting the brand new campus, which can be completed in 2020, as a giant leap ahead. One purpose is as a result of the ability will deliver key components of satellite manufacturing beneath one roof.

After it builds a satellite, Lockheed Martin wants to take a look at the expertise in a particular thermal vacuum chamber that simulates the unforgiving situations in area. Proper now it takes about two days to transfer a freshly constructed satellite to a testing location, in accordance to spokesman Matt Kramer.

That transfer will take about an hour on the new facility, he added.

"That is our factory of the long run: agile, environment friendly and filled with improvements," mentioned Rick Ambrose, the chief vice chairman of Lockheed Martin Area Techniques, in a information launch. "We'll have the opportunity to build satellites that talk with entrance-line troops, discover different planets, and assist distinctive missions."

The corporate says the constructing may have sufficient room to build a variety of satellites each large and small.

Ambrose bragged concerning the new building bay in his assertion, which he mentioned might match the Area Shuttle with "room to spare." It's giant sufficient to build 5 of Lockheed Martin's greatest satellites, which will be greater than 20 ft tall, all on the identical time.

Lockheed Martin expects it is going to make use of about ,500 building contractors over the three-12 months constructing part.

The Maryland firm has already been boosting its ranks of engineers and assist employees on the Colorado-primarily based area division, having added round 750 jobs since 2014. It says the brand new constructing will "accommodate that latest progress and new future tasks."

Lockheed Martin is likely to be a large within the area enterprise, however different firms have grown lately to create a more durable and extra crowded trade.

The plane producer Airbus not too long ago joined forces with a Florida startup known as OneWeb in an effort to ship small satellites into orbit beginning subsequent March. The challenge, which the businesses hope will ship the web across the globe, additionally nabbed a $ billion funding from Japan's SoftBank.

After which, after all, there's Elon Musk. SpaceX -- the tech billionaire's personal area exploration firm -- has for years been engaged on a plan to launch 1000's of small satellites into area to enhance web service. These satellites might begin launching as early as 2019, in accordance to media stories.

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