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Hypersonics Capability Center: Northrop Grumman's next step beyond Mach 5
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Hypersonics Capability Center: Northrop Grumman's next step beyond Mach 5
by Brad Bartz
Los Angeles CA (SPX) Aug 05, 2023

Northrop Grumman Corporation has unveiled its Hypersonics Capability Center (HCC) in Elkton, Maryland. This innovative facility is primed to deliver cutting-edge propulsion systems that will propel hypersonic missiles at speeds surpassing Mach 5.

In response to the U.S. Department of Defense's (DoD) increasing need for long-range and swift-response weapons, the HCC is purpose-built as a next-generation production center. This state-of-the-art facility is set to revolutionize the manufacturing process by providing the essential infrastructure and production capacity, ensuring cost-effective production of hypersonic propulsion at a larger scale.

Remarkably, the HCC stands out as the premier U.S. facility specially crafted for the extensive production of air-breathing propulsion. This encompasses both ramjet and scramjet propulsion mechanisms.

The U.S. Air Force's Hypersonic Attack Cruise Missile program will find invaluable support from the HCC. Beyond this, the facility is also designed to cater to the myriad hypersonic system requirements emerging from various segments of the DoD.

A defining feature of the HCC is its embrace of top-tier production technologies. By integrating digital engineering and streamlining engine manufacturing procedures, the facility aims to achieve cost savings while also bolstering production capabilities.

Jim Kalberer, Northrop Grumman's vice president for missile products, shared, "This is a pivotal moment for hypersonics weapons; we have transitioned from merely crafting and showcasing propulsion prototypes to comprehensive manufacturing. This facility symbolizes a proactive investment, ensuring that we establish an efficient supply chain and fine-tune manufacturing processes. This will facilitate the economical, large-scale production of hypersonic systems."

Kevin Anderson, the Maryland Commerce Secretary, expressed his enthusiasm about the development, noting, "Northrop Grumman's decision to expand its operations in Maryland underscores our state's robust aerospace and defense sector. With the HCC, Cecil County is now home to an unparalleled manufacturing hub. Furthermore, this expansion signifies the creation of numerous job opportunities for our residents. We deeply appreciate Northrop Grumman's continued commitment to Maryland."

Further Insight into the Hypersonics Capability Center:

Northrop Grumman, a frontrunner in hypersonic propulsion, showcases a vast array of advanced weapon offerings. This spans across armaments, components, missiles, electronics, and interceptors.

The establishment of the HCC is a testament to Northrop Grumman's ongoing endeavors to amplify weapons production capabilities for the U.S. military and its allies. The HCC boasts state-of-the-art metal manufacturing techniques and employs precision non-destructive test technologies. This ensures the swift creation of intricate assemblies without compromising on quality. Additionally, the facility's advanced capabilities are expected to create numerous opportunities in the region, including the introduction of highly specialized, high-wage jobs, engineering roles, and other expert positions at the Elkton center.

Furthermore, Northrop Grumman is channeling investments into a fresh missile integration center situated at the Allegany Ballistics Laboratory in West Virginia. This facility will focus on the production of sophisticated defense and strike missiles. Simultaneously, the company is also expanding and refining the solid rocket motor production process at its Promontory, Utah facility.

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