by Carol Bousquet, Maine Public

Maine Public

The Presque Isle endeavor would allow people to participate in science, technology and math (STEM) education and data collection that would support local businesses and agriculture, while efforts proposed for Loring Commerce Centre in Limestone would focus on space industry business and education, test launches and a manufacturing site for satellites.

“What’s envisioned there is a knowledge and innovation hub for new business incubation acceleration, hardware and material competent development facilities, satellite and launch vehicle manufacturing and testing,” Wardwell said.

This is all part of the statewide Maine Space Complex plan to create 3,500 jobs with an average annual salary of $77,000, and to capture 10 percent of the United States small satellite and launch markets by 2045, according to Maine Space Corp.’s website.

Presque Isle International Airport has become the home to one of two launch designers in the state. Vertical Air-Breathing Launch Technology (VALT) Enterprises is in Presque Isle, while bluShift is located in Brunswick Executive Airport. Both help spur development of the Maine space industry, Wardwell said.

The statewide space industry board hopes to further collaborations between bluShift, VALT and efforts at Loring through the Aerospace Research Center proposed in Presque Isle.