Archives For Aerospace & Defense

PA industrial park Somerset County is expanding broadband service with help from a $65,000 grant from the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED), Lt. Governor Anthony Brown today announced.

The funding, provided by DBED’s Maryland Economic Development Assistance Authority and Fund (MEDAAF), will be used to install fiber optics throughout the Princess Anne Industrial Park.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will assist with the broadband expansion by contributing $137,000. The Maryland Broadband Cooperative will supervise the installation while providing labor, equipment, materials and testing throughout the park.

“Investments in broadband expansion translate into additional opportunities for Marylanders and continued economic growth,” said Lt. Governor Brown. “We’re committed to making investments like this one a priority to ensure cyber infrastructure is in place and available to businesses and Maryland families in every part of our state.” Continue Reading…

The second annual InvestMaryland Challenge is in full swing. If your business is in need of a jump start, check out this site for more information about the national business competition. The Challenge offers applicants free admission to networking events, social media promotion, scoring and feedback from judges, exposure to venture capital firms and angel investors and the chance to compete for more than $600,000 in prizes. Winners of the Life Sciences, IT, Cybersecurity and General Industry categories will each win $100,000 awards. Others will take home smaller grants, incubator space, consulting services and other cash and in-kind prizes. Applications are due by Dec. 6.

Judges include a distinguished lineup of industry leaders and experts in a variety of fields. Meet a selection of judges below.

Meet The Judges:



Robb Doub joined New Markets Venture Partners in 2003. Robb is the lead administrative partner and serves as a board director for eCoast Sales Solutions and Appfluent Technology, and is lead partner or board observer for K2 Global, Kroll Bond Ratings, Navtrak, Three Stage Media, CSA Medical and TidalTV. He also serves on the board of Egeen International and the Conflicts Advisory Board of the off-shore hedge funds.


Daphne Dufresne joined RLJ Equity Partners from Parish Capital Advisors, where she was a Venture Partner managing the direct investment and co-investment program. Formerly, Ms. Dufresne was a Principal at Weston Presidio Capital with $3.4 billion of assets under management. She also served as Associate Director in the Bank of Scotland’s Structured Finance Group. Ms. Dufresne received her B.S. from the University of Pennsylvania and her M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.


Christy Williams Wyskiel is an entrepreneur and investor with 20 years of experience focused on the life sciences and healthcare industries. Previously, Christy was Managing Director at Maverick Capital, an equity hedge fund with $12 billion under management. She co-founded GrayBug, an ophthalmic drug-delivery company. In 2012, Christy joined the Johns Hopkins Alliance, a board charged with evaluating the commercial viability of research projects at JHU.


Frederick J. Ferrer has over three decades of experience in the National Security, Intelligence Community (IC), Homeland Defense and Cyber. Mr. Ferrer holds a Master’s of Science in Strategic Intelligence from the National Intelligence University and serves in a number of leadership capacities, including the Maryland Commission on Cybersecurity Innovation and Excellence; National STEM Consortium Advisory Committee; and Chesapeake Regional Tech Council.


As the Executive Director and President of the Emerging Technology Center in Baltimore, Ms. Tillett is responsible for management of budgetary, administrative, programmatic functions and strategic planning. Prior to joining ETC, Ms. Tillett served as president and co-founder of Immersive 3D, LLC, a technology start-up providing web-based 3D computer gaming solutions for K-20 education and offering contract-based technology services.

See the full list of judges and submit your application on

NOAA/NASA Suomi NPP satellite's VIIRS instrument

This image was taken by a polar-orbiting NOAA/NASA satellite on Feb. 10, 2013, as the historic New England snowstorm headed out into the Atlantic. Credit: NOAA Environmental Visualization Lab

Incorrect weather data may leave you without an umbrella on a rainy day, but its effects can also be far more severe.

“Maybe you’re left unprepared for the next hurricane, maybe life is lost or property is damaged, maybe the crops aren’t watered on time. Accurate weather data is really crucial to have,” said Samir Chettri, a program manager at Global Science & Technology.

The Greenbelt-based company, founded in Maryland 22 years ago, takes high-tech weather forecasting and environmental data collection very seriously. Its dedication to accuracy and longstanding relationship with federal agencies recently earned the firm a $22.8 million contract with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Over the next five years, GST will provide technical and engineering services associated with the Joint Polar Satellite System, NOAA and NASA’s next generation of polar-orbiting satellites. The JPSS-1, the program’s second polar-orbiting satellite space craft, is scheduled to launch in early 2017.

Continue Reading…

BWI air travel

Maryland air travel creates a major economic impact. Photo courtesy BWI

Air travel is big business in Maryland, a recent report from the Maryland Aviation Administration shows.

While Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport attracts the overwhelming majority of Maryland’s air traffic, 35 additional public use, general aviation and scheduled commercial service airports also serve the state.

According to the report, these 36 landing facilities produced a major economic impact between 2011 and 2012, including:

  • 102,474 direct, induced, and indirect jobs
  • $4.0 billion of personal wages and salaries
  • $6.2 billion of business revenue
  • $500 million of state and local taxes
  • $2.2 billion of local purchases for supplies and services

Continue Reading…

Lockheed Martin's 100th Anniversary. by Jay Baker at Middle River, MD.

Lockheed Martin’s 100th Anniversary. by Jay Baker at Middle River, MD.

Lockheed Martin announced today that it will be relocating approximately 70 jobs from its Johnstown, Pennsylvania Global Supply Chain Services (GSCS) facility to its Middle River, MD site.

The company says that transition of the work to Middle River will begin immediately and will continue over the next several months. Employees in Johnstown were notified of the decision today. In a statement, Lockheed Martin said “We are working toward making positions available to qualified Johnstown GSCS employees willing to relocate to Middle River. Additional roles will be filled locally as needed.”

The Middle River location — home of the original Glenn L. Martin Company and developed in 1929 — currently employs 420. Throughout Maryland, Lockheed Martin has 7,539 active employees and nearly 5,000 retirees. In addition to Middle River, other Lockheed Martin locations in Maryland are Bethesda, Gaithersburg, Greenbelt, Hanover, Patuxent River, Rockville and Seabrook.

A company spokesperson said that the move to Maryland, which was prompted by an expiring lease in Johnstown, will save the business $1.6 million annually.


According to a tweet from Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, Lockheed Martin in Middle River, Maryland will soon be adding 70 new jobs.


Photo: creative commons via flickr

Photo: creative commons via flickr

Governor Martin O’Malley will join members of Maryland’s Federal Facilities Advisory Board (FFAB) today in Annapolis for the release of the Board’s strategic plan to support the State’s federal community.

The plan outlines more than two dozen actions the State could take to better leverage the potential of government labs, military installations and other federal facilities to drive innovation and create jobs in Maryland.

The FFAB’s 19 members were appointed by Governor O’Malley in January 2010 and since then the board has engaged businesses, federal agencies and academic institutions to develop its recommendations and conduct a thorough survey of Maryland’s federal assets.


NASA Photo

NASA Photo

A key component of Maryland’s growth of the space industry on the Lower Eastern Shore — Wallops Flight Facility near Chincoteague, VA – lit up the sky on Tuesday night over a large section of the eastern seaboard.

NASA successfully launched a Terrier-Improved Orion suborbital rocket at 5:50 p.m. EST this evening from the Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia.

During the flight, two red-colored lithium vapor trails were produced. Reports from those viewing the launch or vapor trails came from as far away as the Outer Banks, N.C.; eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Wallops figures prominently as an anchor of growth for aerospace businesses on the Shore, as outlined in this 2011 report, The Business of Space Science.

By Nick Sohr, Managing Editor, MDBIZNews

Space suits, moon missions, augmented reality glasses and tennis rackets — Juxtopia has a new take on them all.

The 10-year-old company spun out of Morgan State University has evolved from its biomedical information technology roots and is a new resident of the Emerging Technology Center in the renovated former Eastern High School building. There, Juxtopia professionals, Johns Hopkins University students and city high school students are engineering software and hardware that cuts to the company’s core goal — improving human performance.

“Juxtopia has four companies, including itself, collaborating in one space, each doing its own type of innovative technology product development that has commercial potential,” said Jayfus Doswell, Juxtopia’s founder, president and CEO.

The product furthest along the Juxtopia pipeline is the company’s line of augmented reality glasses.

Google recently turned the spotlight on the technology by unveiling a conceptual demonstration of its own augmented reality glasses that would send text messages, take pictures, map routes to destinations and perform other smartphone-like tasks.

Juxtopia’s product is a blue-collar, hard-working cousin, intended for use in war zones, operating rooms, classrooms and factories. Funded by a Small Business Technology Transfer grant from the National Science Foundation, the company has been conducting research on context-aware augmented reality hardware and software since 2005.

Juxtopia plans to manufacture the goggles in Baltimore.

Doswell said there are applications in the medical field, manufacturing, education and sports, among others.

“So imagine there’s a combat medic on the battlefield, 19 years old,” Doswell says.

“He needs to provide a life-saving procedure, very fast, within 60 seconds. That medic puts on the goggles and voice retrieves the task,” he says. “Sometimes that 19-year-old medic on the battlefield, getting shot at, may not be able to [recall] the task fast enough. The goggles provide that assistance.”

The goggles would give the medic step-by-step instructions and allow him or her to document the procedure as it unfolds.

Another Juxtopia company is working on technology to embed sensors in tennis racquets that would feed data back to coaches and players.

And then there are the Juxtopia team members who hope their work here on the ground pays dividends in space.

The Solar Systems Express subsidiary is developing a new spacesuit for the commercial space industry. A sister company is working on an autonomous service vehicle that would zip from satellite to satellite to refuel and repair them, a sort of outer space AAA.

Juxtopia also has a team competing for the Google Lunar X Prize — $30 million for the first privately funded group to land a robot safely on the Moon.

Juxtopia’s team is working on a system of worm-like robots they say will be able to traverse the Moon’s surface more easily than traditional vehicles, as well as an airbag landing system.

With the airbags, spacecraft will be able to bounce on to the lunar surface at 60 miles per hour, rather than the softer 1 or 2 mph required by legacy system. The Juxtopia method is cheaper, lighter and simpler, said Blaze Sanders, a mechanical engineering graduate student at Hopkins.

“Scientists around the world will be able to more cheaply explore the entire solar system with a system that doesn’t have to worry about accurately landing,” Sanders said.

By Nick Sohr, Managing Editor, MDbizMedia

ELTA Systems Ltd., an Israeli defense electronics firm and the world’s fourth-largest radar manufacturer, plans to hire 100 people at its newly opened U.S. headquarters in Howard County, Gov. Martin O’Malley announced Wednesday.

ELTA North America, the company’s U.S. subsidiary, has leased 7,500 square feet of space in the county’s Maple Lawn development. ELTA plans to expand to 25,000 square feet as it hires more employees and ramps up the office to include electronics manufacturing and other services.

“We believe that leveraging the high-tech talent pool provided by the region coupled with the globally proven ELTA technology is a win-win for the customers of ELTA North America,” said David Machuga, the company’s president and CEO. “It was clear from the beginning that the leadership in Maryland at all levels is focused on economic growth and high-tech jobs. This has allowed us to move quickly to the region and begin hiring.”

ELTA Systems was founded in 1967 and is a subsidiary Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. It develops products for intelligence, surveillance, target acquisition and reconnaissance, homeland security and fire control. ELTA has annual sales of $1 billion and exports products and services to the militaries of more than 50 countries.

The state, through the Maryland/Israel Development Center, started discussions with the company about establishing its U.S. presence in Maryland in 2010.

O’Malley, Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown, County Executive Ken Ulman and Department of Business and Economic Development Secretary Christian Johansson met with ELTA executives throughout the process.

DBED extended the company a $300,000 conditional loan and Howard County is offering a tax credit to bring ELTA to Maryland.

“Our strategic location accessible to many U.S. and foreign markets coupled with one of the most highly-educated workforces in the country will be a tremendous benefit to the company as they look to grow their U.S. customer base,” O’Malley said.

Brown met with ELTA officials during his trade mission to Israel in 2010, and Ulman met with IAI executives during his own trip to Israel last year.

“It’s exciting to see a cutting-edge, innovative company like ELTA North America creating high-quality jobs in our communities,” Brown said.

by Maureen Kilcullen, DBED Marketing & Communications

If the sound of the Joint Strike Fighter flying overhead didn’t tip off visitors, certainly the street signs did. Cautionary signs like “Aircraft Taking Off” and “Yield to Landing Aircraft” lined the roads on Naval Air Station Patuxent River on Maryland’s southern peninsula. But – as the Federal Facilities Advisory Board learned during a recent visit – NAS Pax River does much more than just fly jets. It’s arguably the premier R&D and Test & Evaluation facility for aircraft in the world – by far, according to Congressman Steny Hoyer, who represents the installation in Congress.

That’s a message that was hammered home during the FFAB’s tour of NAS Pax River last week. The Atlantic Test Range, Anechoic Chamber, Manned Flight Simulator, and Joint Strike Fighter – all of which were stops on the board’s tour of NAS Pax River – aptly demonstrated the breadth of activities on the base. The tour began with a look at the Joint Strike Fighter, described as “the most affordable, lethal, supportable and survivable aircraft ever to be used by so many warfighters across the globe.”

In the R&D Test Facility, board members explored the helicopter flight simulator station that helps train pilots for duty in Afghanistan. The heavily-insulated Anechoic Chamber offered a unique perspective to those brave enough to climb into the cockpit of a helicopter suspended in the chamber for testing purposes. And the Atlantic Test Range showed off the installation’s airspace and surface target areas that are used for both aircraft testing and evaluation as well as for warfighter training missions.

Roundtable Discussion

Following the tour, Senator Ben Cardin and Congressman Steny Hoyer were on hand for a roundtable discussion that focused on infrastructure, workforce development, education, technology commercialization and procurement.

St. Mary’s County Commissioner Todd Morgan, who once headed the Southern Maryland Navy Alliance, is an enthusiastic supporter of expanding NAS Pax River. “If you don’t grow, you go,” he told the board. “I’m here to grow.”

Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) actions in 1991, 1993 and 1995 did just that, bringing thousands of jobs to Pax River. Today the installation, which was commissioned in 1943, is home to three major Navy commands (the Naval Air Systems Command Headquarters, the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division, and the Air Test Wing Atlantic), 52 tenant commands and several squadrons. With more than 17,000 employees, Naval Air Station Patuxent River is also the largest employer in the region.


by Christine Hansen for MDBizMedia

Governor O'Malley outlines Maryland's competitiveness in the space industry in front of hundreds of professionals working in Maryland's space industry.

Just two years after his inaugural meeting with the Maryland Space Business Roundtable, Governor O’Malley today hailed Maryland’s space science assets and outlined a new initiative to increase business development and job growth before hundreds of scientists, engineers, astrophysicists, academics and business leaders where he unveiled Maryland: the Business of Science Space.

“We will pursue program policies to leverage our federal facilities and institutions of science and discovery to unlock the enormous economic and employment potential of Maryland’s space sector,” Governor O’Malley said.

Key components of the plan include creating a Space Development office within the Department of Business & Economic Development, establishing a space-related business incubator, advocating for a proposed National Center of Climate & Environmental Information and expanding manufacturing of satellite instruments and their components.

According to the The Space Report 2011, nearly 260,000 workers were employed in the space industry in 2009, with average salaries of $92,553, more than double the average private sector salary. Maryland ranks the third highest among the states, with an average space industry salary of $110,614.  Maryland’s space industry employment is estimated at 15,061 jobs and $1.6 billion in wages.

Governor O'Malley gets a presentation from a scientist at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center's Wallops Flight Facility.

The plan would also build on Maryland’s ties to NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility, located just five miles from the Maryland border on Virginia’s Eastern Shore.  The flight facility generates 2,341 jobs for Maryland’s lower eastern shore region, and generated $188 million to the economy.

Christyl Johnson, deputy director for science and technology at NASA, was supportive of Governor O’Malley’s plan.

“I am really excited that our leadership is focusing on STEM technology and feeding the pipeline for the future. I look forward to the role that Goddard will play in the future of climate science,” Johnson said.

Governor O’Malley asked the Space Business Roundtable to work with his administration to build the area around NASA Goddard, NOAA’s Silver Spring and Suitland campuses, and University of Maryland as the “Climate Corridor” and outlined a four-point plan to exploit and enhance Maryland’s leadership in R&D in space and earth science; commercialize space technologies to create new products, new wealth and new employment; promote launch activity at Wallops and create jobs on the Eastern Shore; and educate and train Marylanders for the space and earth science sectors.


“The breakthroughs and innovations occurring in Maryland at NASA, NOAA, Johns Hopkins APL and other institutions represent new frontiers for commercialization and business development in areas like carbon monitoring, manufacturing and life sciences,” Governor O’Malley said.

by Christine Hansen for MDBizMedia

From left to right: DBED Secretary Christian Johansson, TCS CEO Maurice Tose, U.S. Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger and Anne Arundel County Economic Development Corporation CEO Robert Hannon cut the ribbon the TCS's new cybersecurity center in Hanover.

Over 100 were in attendance for the ribbon cutting of TeleCommunication Systems (TCS) (NASDAQ:TSYS) cyber intelligence center in Hanover yesterday.  The secure wireless communication technology company’s new 36,000 square foot facility will house its cybersecurity group, its satellite operations center and its East Coast Lab and data center, and is expected to hire an additional 100 employees.

“There’s not a day that goes by without a new story about a breach in cybersecurity, whether in government or in the private sector,” Maurice Tosé, CEO and Co-Founder of TCS, said.  “Of equal importance are the nation’s ongoing military operations at home and abroad – requiring secure satellite communications. These demands require immediate and intelligent action.  What we do at this facility has a profound impact on this country and our country’s safety and we take this responsibility very seriously.”

The company was founded in 1987 by Maurice Tosé and his wife, providing software development to the federal government.  In 1990, the company took off after winning a major contract with the U.S. Special Operations Command, allowing them to expand their company in the mid-90’s.

TCS CEO Maurice Tose shakes hands with Congressman Ruppersberger after they announce the opening of the new cybersecurity center.

By 2000, the company was delivering deployable communications equipment to the Secretary of State as well as the defense community.  The company was one of six vendors awarded a $5 billion Army Worldwide Satellite Systems contract for a five year period in 2006.

Today, the company processes over 40 percent of the nation’s text messages, develops wireless navigation applications, and holds more than 135 patents in the U.S. and abroad, with more than 300 patents pending.  TCS is also responsible for the nation’s first wireless 9-1-1 call, and now deploys wireless and VoIP 9-1-1 service to operators nationwide.  The company offers solutions for wireless applications, secure satellite communication systems, and cyber security.

Tosé said they chose to build their cybersecurity center in Maryland because of Maryland’s thriving IT and cybersecurity industries.

“Maryland is the ideal place to carry out our mission – its home to the best and the brightest of cyber professionals and has the infrastructure and commitment to grow in research, business and academics,” Tosé said.

“There really couldn’t be a better location for our cybersecurity center, where we will train the next generation of cyber defenders for the government and private sectors,” he said.

With locations in California, Florida, Washington, Maryland and overseas, TCS employs approximately 1,300 professionals, with plans to expand.  In 2010, the company reported $389 million annual revenue, marking six years of record revenue growth.  TCS’s first quarter results showed a 25% growth in services revenue.

“What TCS is doing here is very important and intersects with the State’s goals in a multitude of ways,” DBED Secretary Christian Johansson said.  “Maryland is home to unique cyber security assets and the opening of TeleCommunication Systems’ Cyber Intelligence Center is helping Maryland to thwart cyber attacks and make our world a safer, more secure place to live and work.”

“Our committee oversees cybersecurity and this is a serious threat – I think it’s one of the largest threats we have to deal with as a country,” U.S. Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger, a ranking member on the House Committee on Intelligence, said.  “We have challenges out there – but with those challenges, we have opportunities. As long as government and the private sector continue to come together, we can tackle these challenges.”

Tosé, a member of the Maryland International Advisory Council, will be joining Governor O’Malley on a trade mission to Asia next week, and will work to help the State further develop relations with China.   The Governor is expected to travel to the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea, and Tosé will also be joining him there.  TCS has satellite and communications equipment in the demilitarized zone.

“Our company has a presence in Asia and we do business in other countries in the region,” Tosé said. “My goal is to help the state in any way I can – and China is a very important economy to be in.”