Business boosts AF space capabilities in Beavercreek


A Colorado Springs company with a growing Dayton-area presence has been awarded nearly $190 million in new military contracts to strengthen Air Force capabilities in machine learning and space war-fighting.

As part of that contract, Apogee Engineering has won $135.9 million to begin work at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base from the Air Combat Command (ACC) Intelligence Directorate in data science, machine learning and other fields.

The company is also working with the Air Force Research Laboratory’s (AFRL) — which is based at Wright Patterson — Space Vehicles and Directed Energy directorates.

MORE: VIDEO: Candidates for Dayton commission react to corruption investigation

From a Beavercreek office at 4031 Col. Glenn Highway, Apogee will work with AFRL on creating technologies that support war-fighting capabilities in space, communications, positioning, navigation and other critical functions.

Apogee is spread across 25 locations, with about 300 employees nationwide. One of its main satellite facilities is Beavercreek, where the business has about 30 employees, said Frank Varga, vice president, program operations at Apogee.

MOREGE Aviation jet engine success fuels need for local welders

It’s no accident the office is close to Wright-Patterson, home not only to AFRL but also the Life Cycle Management Center and its program offices, Varga said.

“Apogee is currently hiring the best and brightest in their fields,” he said in an interview Thursday.

Wright Patterson is on the leading edge of more than one next-generation Air Force technology, which means the Apogee local office should only grow, he said.

The office has already grown consistently in the past five years, based on number of employees. Apogee has more than 40 openings now, not all in Beavercreek.

Open positions include scientists and engineers who will work on cyber training, intelligence analysis and more. Most of that work is classified, Varga said.

“Our support really centers around space research and technology and next-generation challenges, including both cyber-intel and what I would call ‘space domain,’” he said.

The company has served the base for about a decade now.

Apogee has a “national campaign” to bring engineering talent to Dayton, Varga said, fueled by a compensation package he termed “exceptional.”

That campaign is going well, he said.

“With unemployment at an all-time low, I think we’ve actually been really successful at relocating talent to the Dayton area,” Varga said. “It’s a great place to live, work and play, and when you couple that with the technological work that’s being led by Wright-Patt, it’s a pretty exciting place to be.”

Added Varga: “That’s why we’re here.”

He suspects growth will continue in Dayton and really all of the company’s 25 operating locations.

So far, Apogee has had no problem bringing talent to the Miami Valley.

“We really do kind of sell the local ‘live, work and play’ (strengths) here, compared to other places nationally,” Varga said. “When you couple that with the work activities, it really is a win-win for the area.”

Dayton’s strengths include low cost of living, few traffic hassles, university presence and more, he said.

Apogee openings can be explored at