BAE Systems opens new facility in Summerville

VIDEO: BAE Systems opens new facility in Summerville

SUMMERVILLE, SC (WCSC) - The third largest defense contractor in the world has a new facility in Summerville.

Today leaders of the BAE Systems held a ribbon cutting ceremony to welcome the company's third building in the Tri-county.  The company uses integrated technology to protect troops and their combat vehicles that are mine-resistant

"We protect those who protect us," is its motto.

"We serve every aspect of the Department of Defense there's really no telling what kind of project work is going to come in the door," Director of C41, Don Barnard said.

Vice President and General Manager of the Integrated Electronics and Warefare Systems, Mark Keeler, says the company is large but it also has a local focus.

"So they were designed to protect soldiers that are going into harms way with the potential to hit IEDs," Keeler said. "So that's what stands these apart from say the Army Humvees that you see."

Vehicles are equipped based on the needs of the customer. This can include installing communication and global network systems for connectivity in mobile environments, protective systems and more.

"The nice thing about the work that we do you can feel it, you can see it you can touch it, you can get inside of it," Keeler said.

The facility has provided more than 100 jobs locally and that number will continue to grow. It also produces an automated gate security system for the U.S Army.

"Our system is used to vet people coming into the gates, to make sure they don't have any outstanding warrants or arrests, not on the terrorist watch list or things of that nature," Keeler said.

The BAE Systems facility in Summerville is one of the larger spaces, spanning more than six acres.

"I gotta tell you this is a fascinating place," Keeler said.

"We have opportunities now to go after a lot bigger contracts," Barnard said.  "If you look at the size of this building we can do a heck of a lot of work in here."

Officials say more than half of its employees are veterans.

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