Orbital Sciences to create 125 new jobs

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by Jessica Sabbath

Orbital Sciences Corp. will spend $45 million to assemble and launch a new rocket, bringing 125 new jobs to Dulles and the Eastern Shore.

The company chose the Mid-Atlantic Regional Spaceport (MARS) at Wallops Island in Accomack County to build its new Taurus II rocket. Orbital will spend $45 million to assemble, test and launch the rocket.

The Taurus II’s first mission is scheduled to be a demonstration delivery of cargo for NASA and Orbital to the International Space Station. If later this year NASA chooses Orbital for its future cargo delivery missions, they would begin from Wallops Island in 2011.

Orbital designs and manufactures rockets and space systems for commercial, military and government clients.

“We appreciate the significant contributions that the Commonwealth of Virginia, MARS and other interested parties are making to improve the Wallops space launch infrastructure,” said Antonio Elias, executive vice president and general manager of Advanced Programs for Orbital, in a statement. “These improvements will allow Taurus II launches and resupply flights to the International Space Station to be conducted from the Eastern Shore.”

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