Huntington Ingalls begins work on unmanned systems centre in Virginia, US

WCN Editorial Team 23 Sep 2020 NORTH AMERICA BUILDINGS

Huntington Ingalls Industries, a US-based military shipbuilding company, has broken ground on Unmanned Systems Center of Excellence in Hampton, Virginia.

Sprawling over a 20-acre site, the campus will have two buildings totalling more than 150,000ft².

The 22,000ft² first building will be completed by the end of 2020 and the main facility, covering an area of 135,000ft², is planned to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2021.

The purpose-built campus will support unmanned systems prototyping, production and testing.

Located on the Hampton Roads Center – North Campus, the HII Unmanned Systems Center of Excellence will feature high-tech digital manufacturing infrastructure.

The centre will be reconfigurable for different production and systems integration projects. It will include precision machining capabilities, a surface finishing area and a dedicated welding space.

Huntington Ingalls Industries technical solutions executive vice president and president Andy Green said: “With U.S. Navy’s increasing demand for UUVs and USVs, we are committed to investing in and expanding our unmanned systems' capabilities.

“Our new Unmanned Systems Center of Excellence will ensure we can continue to provide our customers with the most advanced autonomous systems across all class sizes.”

The company has partnered with the Virginia Economic Development Partnership to secure the project for Virginia.

The project will create more than 250 jobs and will enable collaboration with HII’s Newport News Shipbuilding division, which has advanced undersea system engineering capabilities.

Virginia Governor Ralph Northam said: “Virginia is proud to be home to the largest military shipbuilder in the country.

“Huntington Ingalls Industries is a national leader in advanced manufacturing, and this investment is a powerful testament to Virginia’s workers and business environment.

“The company’s new unmanned systems facility in Hampton will support America’s national security and play a key role in strengthening our economic recovery as we continue working to rebound from this health crisis.”

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Officials during the ground-breaking ceremony of unmanned systems centre in Virginia. (Credit: Huntington Ingalls Industries, Inc.)

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