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Lockheed Martin's Hypersonic Strike Missile digital factory unveils in Courtland, AL

Lockheed Martin's Hypersonic Strike Missile Assembly Building 4 is now a 'virtual' reality.

COURTLAND, Ala. — Hypersonic Strike Missiles, it’s as fast as how it sounds! Alabama leaders celebrated the grand opening of a new advanced manufacturing facility to produce these missiles right here in the Tennessee Valley.

Lockheed Martin's 65,000-square-foot Hypersonic Missile Assembly Building 4 is now a "virtual" reality. Leaders broke ground on the facility in September 2020, and completed construction in June of this year.

What’s different about these missiles is that the designs start off digital.

“Certainly, high tech elements of bringing this digital factory into reality is going to be a big contributor to delivering it at a pace that will help us keep up with our adversaries," said Hypersonic Strikes Program VP Eric Scherff.

"The digital thread that runs through this factory is designed from the bottom up. To create that digital tapestry is going to be key, not just to delivering at that pace, keeping up with the thread but also at a very affordable cost to our government.”

It will be used for both the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Army.

“Think this is a product that can't accept the failure. So, it's very important to make sure that when they push the button, the device will work as planned,” Lockheed Martin integration and test engineer Perry Jones.

“For the warfighter, right, so once we say goes up in the space there's no getting them back so it has to be the first time, and it's for the safety in the defense of our nation,” said Senior Project Engineer Brett Hall.

The manufacturing site will produce missiles like these, and create about 70 jobs in the town of Courtland.

“Michigan calling these additional jobs will only submit Alabama's upward trajectory. Our state is rebounding from a hard 18 plus months, and Alabama is truly working again. And the best is yet to come,” said Governor Kay Ivey.

“Those for JROTC Color Guard, right, that is our future as well. And part of what we're doing here today is for them,” said US Navy Director of Strategic Systems Programs Johnny Wolfe."

Additionally, Lockheed Martin executives added the final strokes to a new mural in Downtown Courtland on Monday.

"We're excited very excited in Courtland. We've got such a beautiful little historic town and this just adds to the beauty of it, inviting people to come in and to see our town, and to enjoy it as much as we do," said Courtland Mayor Linda Peebles.

The mural, located at 553 Tennessee Street, was created by artist Jessie Andrews.

Credit: Keneisha Deas
Lockheed Martin mural in Courtland, Alabama