Lockheed Martin building new satellite-production facility near Denver

DENVER. Lockheed Martin has begun initial construction of a new facility -- located on the company's Waterton Canyon campus near Denver, Colorado -- that will produce next-generation satellites.

The new Gateway Center -- underway at a cost of $350 million, according to the company -- will include a state-of-the-art high bay clean room capable of simultaneously building all sizes of satellites, from micro to macro. The facility's paperless, digitally-enabled production environment is planned to use rapidly-reconfigurable production lines and advanced test capability. The new facility will include a thermal vacuum chamber to simulate the harsh environment of space, an anechoic chamber for sensitive testing of and communications systems, and an advanced test operations and analysis center.

Spacecraft currently in production at 's Waterton Canyon campus -- in use since the 1950s -- include the Air Force's GPS III satellites, NASA's InSight Mars lander, NOAA's GOES-R Series weather satellites, and commercial communications satellites.

The new Gateway Center is slated for completion in 2020.

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