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McCarthy announces $5 Million investment in Rocket Lab at Edwards Air Force Base

Congressman Kevin McCarthy’s Office, October 18, 2022– 

On October 18, Congressman Kevin McCarthy announced the Department of the Air Force’s investment of $5 million in the Air Force Research Laboratory Aerospace Systems Directorate Rocket Propulsion Division (AFRL Rocket Lab) at Edwards Air Force Base. Edwards is at the cutting edge of space and flight technology development, and this funding signals the critical role that East Kern and this installation continue to play in our national security architecture.

 Congressman McCarthy released the following statement:

 “The Department of Defense’s decision earlier this year to renovate Test Stand 1-C and the Department of the Air Force’s decision now to invest $5 million to upgrade a key test facility at the AFRL Rocket Lab underscores the important role that our community continues to play in advancing our nation’s air and space enterprise. I applaud the Department of the Air Force for ensuring the men and women at the AFRL Rocket Lab have the tools they need for success.” 


Congress enacted into law the Fiscal Year 2022 Consolidated Appropriations Act, which included a $5 million increase for Air Force facility infrastructure upgrades at McCarthy’s request. 

Working with Congressman McCarthy, the Department of the Air Force allocated funding to upgrade the high-altitude test chamber at the AFRL Rocket Lab using Fiscal Year 2022 funds. 

The $5 million will be used to modernize the high-altitude facility at the AFRL Rocket Lab that replicates an altitude of 110,000 feet, supporting a variety of test efforts for upper stage rockets. This investment is significant because it helps ensure continued operations and enhances a key air and space test facility of national significance.