Ground broken on NASA’s new aerospace communications facility in US


The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has broken ground on new Aerospace Communications Facility (ACF) at its Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, US.

Upon completion, the new 54,000ft² building will become the agency’s primary facility for radio frequency communications technology research and development.

The facility will comprise about 25 research and development laboratories which are particularly designed and constructed for communication technologies.

It will also include a large, shielded high-bay space, as well as rooftop and ground-based antennae fields.

NASA said that the new facility will allow the agency and its commercial partners to develop faster, higher capacity communications for future missions to the Moon and Mars.

It will also accommodate the research in advanced communication to build urban air mobility and autonomous flying vehicles.

In November last year, NASA has awarded a $33.8m contract to construction firm, The Austin Company, to build the new facility.

Under the contract, Austin will be responsible for the installation of a geothermal borehole field, new asphalt parking areas, exterior site work, landscaping, and the extension of underground utilities.

Construction work on the LEED Silver-certified facility is estimated to be completed by next winter, with the full occupancy by the end of 2022.

NASA Glenn Facilities, Test and Manufacturing director Joel Kearns said: "NASA Glenn continues to develop advanced radio frequency technology, enabling NASA's aeronautics, science and human exploration missions.

"The ACF positions us to further advance communication technology needed to meet the nation's space exploration and aviation goals, as well as enable commercial and defense communications."


Image: This image shows the architectural design of the new Aerospace Communications Facility. (Credit: NASA/Ross Barney Architects/ PR Newswire)

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