From Florida Today
The spacecraft slated to take the first woman to the moon will be partially built in the former Astronaut Hall of Fame building in Titusville.
After sitting vacant for five years, Lockheed Martin spent $20 million to renovate the “fixer upper” in Titusville into a state-of-the-art spacecraft manufacturing facility called the STAR Center.
Lockheed currently assembles the Orion spacecraft for NASA’s Artemis missions to the moon at KSC’s Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout building but needed more space. The Astronaut Hall of Fame turned out to be a good match. It’s a short commute from KSC, has plenty of square footage and has a high bay for crane operations.
“In 2019 NASA awarded Lockheed Martin with a follow-on contract for the production and operation of Orion spacecraft. At the time we knew we needed more manufacturing capacity and Lockheed Martin saw the potential in this facility albeit a bit of a fixer upper,” NASA’s Paul Marshall said.
Under Lockheed Martin’s contract with NASA, the agency has committed to order Orion vehicles for six missions with the potential to add another six through 2030.
The company will slowly ramp up production but only plans to hire about 75 people to work at the STAR Center.
That number may seem low but Lynda Weatherman, president & CEO of the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast, says this facility is a good thing for Brevard.
“Having a manufacturing presence has the greatest impact on the economy,” she said. “These are high end jobs and also the manufacturing company supply chain — they’re gonna buy parts. They’re gonna attract suppliers.”
Production activities that will take place at the STAR Center include assembly and testing of heat shields, crew module adapter wire harness fabrication and life support systems assembly and testing.
“We are using advanced manufacturing capabilities and digital-first technologies to speed up production and improve quality to get Orion from factory to space faster than ever before,” said Lisa Callahan, commercial civil space vice president at Lockheed Martin Space.
–Read more at Florida Today