When Dynetics started the Space Solutions Division in 2009, it was a primary goal to build and test space hardware. To design satellites, build small launch vehicles and manufacture flight hardware for commercial, NASA and other government customers was the focus. That goal is being achieved as Dynetics' expertise appreciated by government and industry alike. As demand for Dynetics products and testing services grows, it is time for a new aerospace facility in northern Alabama, and Dynetics is just the company to fulfill that need.
Dynetics broke ground on a $21 million aerospace structures complex in August 2017. Now, the last beam of steel located on the highest point is going in place on the first facility in the complex, Test Stand 1. Construction partner B.L. Harbert held a topping out ceremony on Friday, Feb. 16 to commemorate the occasion. The "Topping Out" construction tradition includes the team signing the steel beam, hoisting it into the air and enjoying a celebratory lunch. During ceremony, B.L. Harbert mentioned 711 tons of structural steel will be used above ground and nearly 1,650 cubic yards of concrete will be used for the project.
The 100-foot tall test stand will be Dynetics first facility in Decatur, Alabama near the Tennessee River. It will be used for qualification testing of large aerospace structures. The company chose this location because of its proximity to the river and the collaboration with other industry partners in Decatur. The Tennessee Valley is home to Marshall Space Flight Center and Redstone Arsenal. Dynetics had the foresight to build a complex that would keep programs and projects close to home.
The company already has two customers scheduled to use the complex - structural testing of a commercial partner and the production of NASA's Universal Stage Adapter (USA). RUAG Space, also located in Decatur, is a partner on the USA program.
The second facility in this state of the art complex will be the Hardware and Integration Facility, that will be completed later in 2018. The company expects to have 25 jobs in Decatur when the complex is completed.
The dream of building and testing hardware is becoming a reality for Dynetics. Steel is going up and soon hardware will be in place. The company is topping out today and it will be testing soon.