News Releases

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-Kan.) and Congressman Ron Estes (KS-04) today announced $5,000,000 in funding from the Department of Defense awarded to the Wichita State University National Institute for Aviation Research-led Defense Manufacturing Community Consortia to expand capabilities, processes, sustainment planning, workforce and engineering competencies to prototype development for weapon system parts and assemblies.

This grant will contribute to a joint project between Wichita State University (WSU) and Spirit AeroSystems. This project will allow WSU and Spirit to develop, prototype, test and industrialize high temperature materials to support the defense, aviation and space industries.

“The aviation manufacturing industry in Kansas plays a critical role in providing our state with high-paying jobs and supporting our aviation and industry partners across the country,” said Sen. Moran. “Wichita State University’s National Institute for Aviation Research and its partnership with Spirit AeroSystems will continue to support Wichita as the ‘Air Capital of the World’ and bolster its aviation research and testing capabilities. I’m pleased to see that this grant will support the DOD’s critical mission and defense capabilities, and I look forward to joining WSU and Spirit next month to announce how this grant will impact Wichita’s defense industry.”

“Wichita State University’s National Institute for Aviation Research is already a leader in aviation research, providing testing, certification, training and research to the aviation industry not only in Kansas, but around the world,” said Sen. Marshall. “Partnering with NIAR and area manufacturers to expand capabilities, workforce development, and engineering competencies around weapon systems development will ensure a promising future for national security innovation.”

“As the Air Capital of the World, our aviation industry has a unique relationship with Wichita State University that ensures south central Kansas remains a hub for aircraft development, testing and manufacturing,” said Rep. Estes. “WSU's NIAR is already recognized as a leader in aviation testing, certification and research thanks to the world-class people and facilities right here in Kansas. This grant is an investment in our community and our future, as it impacts Shockers, our skilled workforce, and our men and women in uniform.”

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