Relativity Space, the first and only company to 3D print entire rockets, continues to grow with a $2.42 million investment in southern Mississippi to support the expansion of its rocket vehicle and engine testing capabilities at NASA’s Stennis Space Center.
“People across our nation know that if you want to go to space, you have to go through Hancock County. The companies located at Stennis Space Center, such as Relativity, continue proving to the world that the future of our nation’s aerospace industry is here in Mississippi,” said Governor Tate Reeves. “Thanks to the President’s commitment to expanding aerospace, our country is making new progress on this frontier and we are excited to be a part of it. The innovative work being performed by Relativity at Stennis is unprecedented and will transform the industry while providing exciting STEM careers for Mississippians on the Gulf Coast for generations to come.”
Relativity, which will add 12 jobs, integrates 3D printing, robotics and software to design, build and launch orbital rockets in days instead of months. Relativity started testing of its rocket engines and vehicle stages at Stennis Space Center’s E3 test complex in 2016 and began testing at the E2 complex in late 2019, completing hundreds of successful tests since.
The company’s growth supports its investment in the E2 test complex and will support the addition of liquid natural gas (LNG) capabilities to the test stand, a significant infrastructure improvement. Liquid natural gas and methane propellants are part of the future technology roadmap for interplanetary launch capabilities. Last year, Relativity invested in its Stennis Space Center operations to support renovations and upgrades for Building 9101, an investment that will create 190 jobs.
“Southern Mississippi continues to play a leading role in America’s journey to space, drawing from a rich history starting with the Apollo program and continuing through today’s Artemis program. Relativity is honored to be part of the next chapter in this historic legacy. With a skilled work force and world-class infrastructure, Hancock County is the perfect place for us to perform the wide variety of tests that are critical to develop our fully 3D printed Terran 1 orbital rocket and Aeon engines,” said Tim Ellis, CEO and co-founder of Relativity. “We are thrilled to expand our partnership with NASA Stennis and the Mississippi Development Authority, and we look forward to being part of the aerospace industry in Mississippi for decades to come.”
MDA is providing assistance for an access road between the E4 and E2 test facilities. Relativity also qualifies for the Advantage Jobs Rebate Program, which provides a rebate to eligible businesses that create new jobs that exceed the average annual wage of the state or county in which the company locates or expands. The company also qualifies for the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission’s Job Creation Grant, which incentivizes companies to hire local residents.
“Relativity’s continued investment in Hancock County and creation of jobs demonstrate to industry leaders worldwide that Mississippi is the place to be for major developments in the field of aerospace and space exploration,” MDA Interim Director John Rounsaville said. “MDA is proud to once again partner with Relativity as it grows in Hancock County, and we appreciate the teamwork of the Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission and the Hancock County Board of Supervisors, which was vital in making this expansion a reality.”
“Relativity’s ability to continue to invest in Hancock County and our people demonstrates our region’s importance in the evolving world of aerospace,” said Hancock County Port and Harbor Commission CEO Bill Cork.