BAE Systems’ new engineering and manufacturing center of excellence in Cedar Rapids is home to the company’s Navigation and Sensor Systems business, a developer of advanced GPS technology. (Image courtesy BAE Systems)

The state-of-the-art workspace in Cedar Rapids supports the company’s mission-critical GPS business

November 1, 2022

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa—BAE Systems recently opened a 278,000-square-foot facility in Cedar Rapids that brings together its design and production employees in a single center of excellence with modern manufacturing, engineering, and office space, the company said in a release.

BAE Systems reportedly invested more than $100 million to build the state-of-the-art facility, designed to enable collaboration and efficient operations. The site is home to BAE Systems’ Navigation and Sensor Systems (NSS) business, recognized as a leader in advanced global positioning system (GPS) technology that provides trusted navigation and guidance for a range of missions.

The company said the design of the workspace will provide flexible product flow to optimize efficiency, with room for growth. More than 800 BAE Systems employees will work at the Cedar Rapids site as the company continues to expand its workforce to accommodate business growth, according to the release.

“Our workforce in Cedar Rapids is the heart of our military GPS business, and we want to keep our roots in this community,” said John Watkins, vice president and general manager of Precision Strike and Sensing Solutions at BAE Systems, in a statement. “This facility is a world-class work environment that will support innovation, production, and teamwork, and helps our talented team continue delivering cutting-edge technology to our customers.”

A pioneer in military GPS technology, BAE Systems has reportedly delivered more than 1.5 million devices for more than 280 airborne, ground, and weapon system platforms. The company designs and produces advanced GPS technology compatible with the next-generation M-Code signal, improving security and anti-jamming capabilities for critical defense applications.

“The first GPS signal ever received on Earth was received here in Cedar Rapids,” said Luke Bishop, director of Navigation and Sensor Systems at BAE Systems, in the release. “We’re building on our legacy of innovation, and we’re supported with the tools and resources to do it.”

The Cedar Rapids facility is part of a broader strategic investment by BAE Systems across the country to support business growth, manufacturing capacity, and workforce expansion. The company said it recently opened state-of-the-art facilities in Austin, Texas; Huntsville, Alabama; and Manchester, New Hampshire.

The new Cedar Rapids site is part of BAE Systems’ Electronic Systems sector, which designs and develops innovative commercial, defense, and space electronics.

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