Huntsville, Alabama is steeped in space and defense industry prestige. It was backdrop to the Saturn V program that took America to the Moon, and today is home to major defense contractors like Lockheed Martin, Boeing, and Raytheon. As Nomad rapidly expands service to the DoD, “Rocket City” is a fitting launchpad.
While the Huntsville office (opened in early 2023) is new for Nomad, the spirit of customer support that brought us there is not. Understanding why this expansion fits perfectly with our customer-centric approach takes us back to the early 2000’s, when Nomad embarked on a long-standing relationship with Redstone Arsenal.
A significant U.S. Army post in the area, Redstone is home to several organizations and commands. We’ve partnered with groups there for over 15 years, working to understand challenges and developing solutions that enhance and advance critical missions.
“Redstone sees us as a trusted disruptor. A full-spectrum engineering and manufacturing partner who’s committed to their mission.”
In recent years, our defense customers are seeing threats manifest more quickly. They need vendors who can respond in lockstep; creative and agile companies that move from idea to factory, fast. “We believe Redstone sees us as a trusted disruptor,” Nomad CEO, Will Schmautz said. “A full-spectrum engineering and manufacturing partner who’s committed to their mission.”
Always looking to improve, we considered how Nomad could double-down on our strengths in service of defense customers like Redstone Arsenal. “Proximity is everything.” Schmautz said. “To understand these ever-changing requirements and move to solutions faster, we need to be across the table from our customers every day.” Which brings us — literally and in the arc of this story — to Huntsville.
Among the Army groups operating in the area is Redstone Test Center (RTC), a key evaluator of missile and aviation systems. In 2022, Nomad’s mission focus, relationships, and expertise in mobile telemetry led to our selection as a vendor on an exciting RTC test program, which aims to enable simpler integration of avionics systems across a variety of aircraft platforms. The award made expansion into Huntsville a no-brainer.
What exactly will Nomad be doing in Rocket City? Glad you asked.
The RTC test program utilizes a collection of modular, intermodal shipping containers that are integrated with telemetry and flight termination systems. Nomad will design and manufacture container-based solutions for the program that provide a safe, secure, climate-controlled testing environment. These rugged, mobile units enable precision flight control and fast, actionable data processing.
“We want to be the go-to partner for connected, mobile ops containers for the DoD. The sky is the limit for this team.”
Our experience with open computing architectures and modular design practices fit hand-in-glove with modern defense, and will serve as a blueprint for future projects. Drew Hicks, Program Manager for Nomad in Huntsville, put it simply. “We want to be the go-to partner for connected, mobile ops containers for the DoD.”
Hicks is assembling a team of expert manufacturing, mechanical, and electrical engineers who are working alongside seasoned defense industry project management and customer support professionals. “The sky is the limit for this team,” Hicks said.
He’ll have an unparalleled pool of talent from which to continue growing. Many top-notch engineers and scientists are drawn to Huntsville to work on complex military programs and projects, and the city has become a hub for defense industry innovation.
Nomad-designed containerized solutions will initially be manufactured in our new Libby, Montana plant, a 100,000 square foot facility that’s also serving the growing demand for van-based mobile operations platforms.
Expansion into Huntsville and Libby are positive, leading edge indicators of Nomad’s growth trajectory in defense. More importantly, they support a larger strategy that will put us nearer to our customers in every industry and market.
Schmautz summarized the plans succinctly. “Everyone seems to be pitching remote work relationships. We want to be closer. It’s the only way to truly understand our customers’ complex challenges and support them with speed and flexibility.”
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