Aerospace & Aviation

Mississippi has a long history in the aerospace industry, dating back to the 1930s when Pioneer Aerospace opened its doors in South Mississippi. Today, Mississippi is home to companies that produce helicopters, airborne early warning radar systems, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), parachutes, electromagnetic launch systems for aircraft carriers, and composite jet engine components.

Companies like GE Aviation, Stark Aerospace, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, Eaton Aerospace, American Eurocopter and other industry leaders have operations in Mississippi. Even Rolls Royce built its first engine test facility outside of the United Kingdom in Mississippi. This concentration in aerospace and aviation companies has made Mississippi’s Gulf Coast region home to one of the highest concentrations of avionics and aircraft maintenance personnel in the nation among mid-size metropolitan markets. The Gulf Coast is also home to NASA’s Stennis Space Center.

Recently, Mississippi launched a tax incentive program to encourage businesses conducting research or manufacturing for the aerospace sector to locate or expand in the state.

Mississippi also supports this thriving industry through university programs and research.

  • GE Aviation has partnered with the Mississippi Polymer Institute at the University of Southern Mississippi to develop composite materials for GE’s Batesville facility.
  • Mississippi State University in Starkville has the Raspet Flight Research Laboratory, which includes a complete aircraft manufacturing facility. It is the nation’s largest university flight lab.
  • Mississippi State offers doctoral degrees in its aerospace engineering program.
  • Delta State University in Cleveland offers undergraduate and graduate programs in commercial aviation.
  • Northwest Mississippi Community College offers jet engine mechanics courses.


Whether your company is considering locating in Mississippi or you’re interested in working in the industry, our aerospace and aviation sector is literally taking off.

  • Find tax incentives for the aerospace and aviation industry here.
  • Read more about how Mississippi’s research universities support state businesses here.
  • Read how Mississippi provided on-the-job training for Aurora Aviation here
  • Learn about more workforce training provided by Mississippi’s 15 community/junior colleges here.