Dynetics opened its new Aerospace Structures Complex in Decatur, Ala. on Tuesday, and the company hosted a ceremonial ribbon cutting program and commemorated the opening of the facility with state and local officials.
Serving as the construction partners to Dynetics, BL Harbert first broke ground on the complex in August 2017.
“It’s so easy to complete a construction project and move on to the next, forgetting the impact we made,” said Ben Patrick, Vice President of Commercial of BL Harbert International’s US Group. “This complex will continue to play an important role in space exploration and national security for generations to come. Over the next couple of years, and even decades, we will watch rockets launch into space that were tested in Decatur. This should make all BL Harbert employees, and Alabamians, proud!”
The new facility will be a game-changer for the aerospace industry in North Alabama. It brings a capability to Decatur to support the development, integration, and structural testing of large aerospace structures. Initially, Dynetics will use the facility to build the NASA Space Launch System’s Universal Stage Adapter. Additionally, they will also perform structural qualification testing for United Launch Alliance’s Vulcan Centaur booster. The facility is a multi-use facility that will serve NASA, DoD and commercial customers.
“It’s an exciting time for the space industry,” added Kim Doering, Dynetics vice president of Space Systems. “NASA’s exploration programs including the Space Launch System, Human Lander System and Gateway afford the Alabama space community the opportunity to make significant contributions to the establishment of a human lunar economy and to landing humans on Mars. ULA’s new Vulcan Centaur launcher will provide a critical capability to support the defense of our nation and to support the burgeoning small satellite market. Dynetics decided to build this complex so we could contribute to these vital projects. Our new complex will play an essential role in Alabama’s aerospace landscape.”
The complex has three facilities: Test Stand 1, Test Control Center, and the Hardware Integration Facility:
- The Test Stand 1 is 60 feet long, 60 feet wide, and 100 feet high with the capability to hoist 35 tons. It will support structural qualification testing.
- The 4,000 square foot Test Control Center offers customers the capability to view tests and analyze real-time data onsite.
- The Hardware Integration Facility allows for the assembly of large aerospace structures and houses test cells. Within the 43,000 square foot facility, the integration high bay is 15,000 square feet.