kodiak launch complex new name

Mark Greby, COO of the Alaska Aerospace Corporation, shows a poster announcing the new name of the Kodiak Launch Complex. (Roni Toldanes/ Kodiak Daily Mirror)

Officials of the Kodiak Launch Complex are having a blast today. That’s because KLC is gone, in name, at least.

Mark Greby, COO and senior vice president of the Alaska Aerospace Corp., said KLC will be renamed Pacific Spaceport Complex.

He said the name change will be made public today during the 31st Space Symposium in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

A company news release said the name change reflects the growing capability of AAC to meet customer requirements and its broader aerospace commitment to the Pacific region.

“The Pacific Spaceport Complex provides launch services throughout the region, as well as from our traditional home in Alaska,” said Craig Campbell, president and CEO of AAC, which owns and operates the state-owned launch complex.

The name change also spotlights recent steps taken by AAC to seek a more diversified clientele, expanding beyond services based solely on the Kodiak facility, company officials said.

“We are not changing anything, except for the name,” Greby told the Daily Mirror in an interview Thursday. “But the name is really important because the Pacific is our market. This isn’t about just Kodiak or Alaska.”

Greby said AAC is also actively working to change its business model.

“We want to be commercial. We never want to be on state funding,” he said. “We want to make sure we have a viable commercial model.”

Early this month, AAC said the cleanup of hazardous materials from a 2014 rocket explosion has been completed and damaged facilities are expected to be back in operation by the end of the year.

A rocket carrying an experimental Army strike weapon exploded during launch last August, damaging buildings at the complex. Greby said the Defense Department paid more than $4 million to lease the complex.

During an interview Thursday, Greby said AAC is currently engaged in talks with six potential customers, but he said he could not divulge whether the company is in active talks with the military.

Greby said AAC does not intend to launch any kind of an offensive weapon from the launch pad.

“We don’t intend to launch any kind of offensive weapons there,” he said. “It is not our business plan, it’s not our model.”

Roni Toldanes is managing editor of the Kodiak Daily Mirror. Contact him at (907) 486-3227.

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