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Aerospace & Aviation

Alabama has a rich history in aerospace and aviation — an industry that took off on our soil more than a century ago. Ever since the Wright Brothers established the nation’s first civilian flight school in Montgomery back in 1910, Alabama has provided a steady launchpad for companies and organizations involved in flight.

Alabama’s presence in the aerospace and aviation industry is broad and vast, with activities in virtually every segment of the sector. Aerospace manufacturing alone accounts for 14,800 jobs in the state, while Alabama also ranks among the Top 5 states for aerospace engineers, with a count of 3,900 in the profession.

Over 400 aerospace companies from more than 30 different countries have chosen Alabama, including industry giants such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, GE Aviation, Raytheon, Northrop Grumman and GKN Aerospace. Another of these giants is Airbus, which produces A320 Family and A220 passenger jets in Mobile at its only U.S. manufacturing facility.

In addition to private companies, Alabama also has a strong military aerospace/aviation presence. Located in Southeast Alabama, Fort Rucker serves as the training center for U.S. Army helicopter pilots. In Huntsville, Redstone Arsenal is a major research, engineering, and test center that houses the Army’s critical missile defense and aviation programs. The Arsenal is also home to the Marshall Space Flight Center, one of NASA’s largest and most historic facilities. Another aerospace cluster is developing in the Mobile area around the Airbus assembly line.

Alabama’s comprehensive aerospace/aviation presence also includes an extensive roster of training programs and assets. AIDT’s Robotics Technology Park near Decatur offers specialized training in robotics and automation programs, and AIDT operates an aviation training center in Mobile. In addition, the Alabama Community College System’s Alabama Aviation Center, which has several locations across the state, offers FAA-certified training in airframe and engine maintenance.

Quick Facts

  • 100+ years of aerospace and aviation history
  • 63,000+ employed in aerospace and defense
  • 3,900 aerospace engineers (Top 5 in US)
  • Home to businesses from 30 countries
  • 2nd largest research and technology park in the U.S. (Cummings Research Park)
  • More than 400 aerospace companies
  • Aerospace manufacturing employed 14,800 as of December 2023
  • Over $2.1 billion in aerospace equipment and parts exported in 2023


  • Airbus
  • Boeing
  • Northrop Grumman
  • Continental Aerospace
  • United Launch Alliance
  • PPG Aerospace
  • WestWind Group
  • Sikorsky
  • Airbus Military NA
  • Raytheon
  • Collins Aerospace
  • SAIC
  • GKN Aerospace
  • Lockheed Martin
  • GE Aerospace
  • BAE Systems
  • VT MAE
  • Aerojet Rocketdyne
  • Teledyne Brown Engineering
  • Commercial Jet
  • Dynetics
  • SES

Aviation Training

  • AIDT
  • ACCS Alabama Aviation Center
  • Fort Rucker
  • CAE Training for Fixed-Wing Army Aviators

Aerospace Engineering Departments at Alabama Universities

These Alabama universities offer degrees in Aerospace Engineering:

  • Auburn University
  • University of Alabama
  • Tuskegee University
  • University of Alabama at Huntsville

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