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Boeing expands PAC-3 missile facility in Huntsville

A view of the Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama just after sunset. STOCK

Friday, April 6 Alabama Governor Kay Ivey (R) attended the ribbon cutting for Boeing’s Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile Seeker production facility expansion.

This marks the completion of one of several facility investments currently in progress from Alabama’s largest aerospace employer. The facility will enhance production for one of Boeing Huntsville’s premier programs.

“While serving as lt. gov., I joined Boeing Defense for the groundbreaking for their PAC-3 Missile Seeker facility expansion,” Ivey said. “Today, I’m proud to be back as Governor for the ribbon cutting for this 28k square-foot facility.”

“For more than 50 years, Boeing has been doing business in Alabama,” Ivey said. “I thank them for continuing to believe in the people of Alabama, and selecting our Huntsville facility for this expansion. – at Boeing.” “Today’s ribbon cutting for Boeing Defense’s PAC-3 Missile Seeker facility expansion is a testament to Alabama’s strong aerospace industry & ultimately Alabama’s commitment to protecting our nation.”

“Great to join in the ribbon cutting ceremony today for Boeing’s new Patriot Advanced Capability-3 facility in Huntsville,” Congressman Mo Brooks, R-Huntsville, said. “Boeing’s decision to expand in the Tennessee Valley when they could have chosen anywhere in the country emphasizes our workforce’s aerospace engineering prowess. Through their expertise and patriotism, the employees at Boeing ensure when America must go to war it’s never a fair fight.”

“Glad to see my friend Rep. Mo Brooks today at Boeing for the ribbon cutting celebrating their PAC-3 Missile Seeker manufacturing facility expansion,” Ivey wrote on social media. “Thank you for all you do for Alabama, especially for the folks in our 5th Congressional district!”

The Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile employs hitto-kill technology to intercept and destroy tactical ballistic missiles, cruise missiles and “air-breathing” threats such as aircraft through direct body-to-body contact. The seeker, built by Boeing, detects and tracks the target during the terminal phase of engagement, providing precision data to the missile’s onboard guidance system.

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“Seeker production is projected to more than double in the next three years,” Jerry McKinney, Boeing PAC-3 Missile seeker production manager, said. “That in itself is a job, but the real challenge is balancing missile seeker production with depot recertification.”

Re-certification of the PAC-3 Missile seeker is required every 10 years. That means every PAC-3 Missile in the field—either deployed or stored—is returned to the factory, disassembled and tested to ensure operational performance.

Economic Developer Nicole Jones explained, “Boeing’s 28,000 square foot Patriot Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) Missile Seeker facility expansion will add approximately 70 full-time engineering and manufacturing jobs to our area, sought-after jobs that provide wages Alabamians can live on with a global company that consistently invests in its workforce and our community.”

Jones added, “Boeing has been a part of Huntsville since 1962, and we thank Boeing for their continued presence and innovation in Huntsville and our entire state. The PAC-3 announcement translates into local jobs and highlights Alabama’s important role in the aerospace industry as well as national security.”

Jim Chilton, Senior vice-president of the Space and Missile Systems division of Boeing Defense, Space & Security stated, “The impact for our nation is huge. PAC-3 is the only combat-proven, hit-to-kill technology in the field protecting our warfighters today, and not only our warfighters, but our important allies. We’ve built over 3,000 right here in Huntsville. Some of them need to come home for refurbishment and, of course, warfighters need more. We’re proud to be investing to make a bigger facility to make that happen.”

Original reporting by Boeing News’ Linda James contributed to this report.

Brandon Moseley is a former reporter at the Alabama Political Reporter.

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