ROCKET CENTER, W.Va. – Northrop Grumman Corp. announced Wednesday that a 113,000 square foot missile production facility will be built at the ABL campus in Mineral County.
The new facility is designed to increase the company’s capacity within the defense industrial base to ensure the delivery of current and future weapons to meet warfighter needs. When completed in 2024, the Missile Integration Facility will have the capacity to support production of up to 600 strike missiles per year, according to a company press release.
“Our new Missile Integration Facility is a factory of the future, designed to cost-effectively produce large quantities of missiles to meet growing customer demand,” said Mary Petryszyn, vice president and president of Northrop Grumman. Defense Systems, in the press release. “Northrop Grumman’s investments in manufacturing capability, digital processes and emerging technologies are resulting in rapid deployment of capabilities in the field.
Unlike traditional missile integration facilities, Northrop Grumman’s facility is not limited to the production of one type of missile, but is easily modified to handle the integration of current and new missile programs.
“They’re going to be making three new (types of) missiles for an upcoming project for the military,” said Randy Crane, president of the Mineral County Chamber of Commerce. “This expansion is going to (include) several buildings, so it’s a pretty big project.”
Crane toured the Rocket Center facility last week and was on hand for an update on the expansion from Northrop Grumman officials.
“Someone asked if they’re increasing their capacity because of the war in Ukraine…we’re sending some weapons over there, so they have to do some backfilling,” Crane said. “The answer to that question was yes. It’s not just here, they have factories all over the country. A good number of them are ramping up.”
The facility is expected to include expanded manufacturing workforce skills, adding engineering and manufacturing jobs to the area.
Crane said growth will boost the business climate overall.
“It’s a win-win situation for the region,” Crane said. “I’m sure a good number of these people will reside in Mineral County and some in Allegany County as well. I expect business to improve in both of our counties, including the plate tax and all that goes with it.
Crane said there have been “talks to bring some of the supply companies that supply Northrop Grumman to the area. I know economic development in Mineral County and probably Allegany County as well, is looking at that This is great news and it continues the expansion. It has a trickle down effect.
Mitch Carmichael, West Virginia’s economic development secretary, applauded the move on Twitter, saying, “Exceptional announcement from an exceptional company.”
Northrop Grumman is a leader in the development of missile components. The company continues to expand its advanced weapons capabilities nationwide with the construction of a first-of-its-kind hypersonic capability center in Elkton, Maryland, designed to provide full lifecycle production, design and development to production and integration of hypersonic weapons to be operational in 2023.