COLUMBUS — U.S. Sen. Thad Cochran says the Department of Defense has awarded a $14-million competitive contract to Aurora Flight Sciences in Columbus to assist in the development of a new aircraft for the Department of Defense.
In a news release, Cochran’s office said Saturday that the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency awarded the contract under its X-Plane program to support development of a new plane that incorporates advanced air speed and performance measures. Work on the Vertical Take-Off and Landing Experimental Plane project will be carried out in Columbus.
Aurora Flight Sciences designs and builds robotic aircraft and other advanced aerospace vehicles for scientific and military applications.
“This award is an example of Mississippi companies successfully competing for programs that bring high tech jobs to our state, while providing the best equipment and capabilities to our Armed Forces,” said Cochran, vice chairman of the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee.
“Mississippi has a talented workforce, and we have continued to diversify and grow our ability to provide high tech production for very advanced military and commercial applications. That is in no small measure a result of the leadership of Senator Cochran and his encouragement and support,” John Langford, Aurora Flight Sciences CEO, said in the news release.