NASHUA – In case you missed it, on Friday Senator Maggie Hassan toured Rotor Technologies’ facility in Nashua, meeting with leadership and employees to discuss their work and the importance of supporting manufacturers and innovative businesses.
The visit is part of Senator Hassan’s ongoing efforts to help build a stronger, more innovative 21st century economy. Last week, Senator Hassan announced more than $450k through the Federal Aviation Administration to expand Nashua Community College’s technical and mechanical job training programs for aviation. Senator Hassan last year helped develop and pass into law the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act, which is strengthening our economic and national security. The law is helping to support our supply chains, lower costs, and ensure that America can outcompete countries like China by investing in research and manufacturing here at home.
The Union Leader and The Nashua Telegraph detailed Senator Hassan’s visit, as well as her work to support innovation and workforce training education in New Hampshire.
Read coverage highlights below:
Nashua Telegraph: Hassan tours Nashua aviation R&D company
Getting a first-hand look Friday at one of the newest aviation industry companies to land in Nashua, Sen. Maggie Hassan (D-NH) visited Rotor Technologies on Perimeter Road.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology scientists established Rotor Technologies in 2021, hoping it would develop remote piloting systems to enhance the safety and efficiency of helicopter transportation used in aerial firefighting, search and rescue, and other public operations.
“Rotor Technologies is on the cutting edge of innovation, developing new technology to make helicopter transportation safer and more efficient in high-risk situations such as search and rescue,” Hassan said.
“We are very grateful to have been welcomed so warmly into the aviation community at Nashua’s Boire airfield over the last few years and to have had the opportunity to develop world-changing aviation technology in New Hampshire,” Rotor Technologies chief operating officer Greg McMillan said.
“It was great to hear Sen. Hassan’s support for our work here, and learn that her policy goals, as well as the broader Nashua and New Hampshire community, are so well aligned with the growth of our program as we continue to invest in New Hampshire.”
New Hampshire’s congressional delegation – including Hassan, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, Rep. Annie Kuster and Rep. Chris Pappas -announced earlier this week that Nashua Community College would receive $456,051 through the Federal Aviation Administration to help expand its technical and mechanical job training programs for the aviation industry. […]
By Michael Cousineau
Two years ago, while working in finance in Hong Hong, McMillan got a call from his former roommate, Hector Xu, who was at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in a different Cambridge.
The pair searched small airports around New England and chose Nashua, the same airport where Xu learned to pilot helicopters, to operate their company, Rotor Technologies.
Xu brought along people he met at MIT and grew the company to 25 workers operating in a nondescript airport hangar.
Its target market is government agencies in both the federal and state governments.
The company has received $21 million in venture capital, but penny-pinching was evident during a tour Friday with Sen. Maggie Hassan, D-N.H.
Company founders showed a circuit board inside a glass and metal box.
“That is our thermal testing rig, but it’s actually a pizza oven,” said Xu, the company’s CEO.
The company bought the pizza oven online for a few hundred bucks, saving tens of thousands of dollars off the cost of using a professional testing lab.
The circuit board controls a helicopter’s engine, so an overheated circuit board could prove deadly.
“This pizza oven is like going to potentially save lives some day in the future,” Xu said.
“That’s a good, fun and basic story, too, about don’t overthink things sometimes, right,” Hassan said.
Hassan said she helped secure a $456,000 federal grant for Nashua Community College to expand job training programs for aviation, possibly providing future workers for Rotor Technologies.
The company’s technology could theoretically keep helicopters in the air up to 20 hours a day compared with sometimes two or three hours a day now, McMillan said.
Getting wildfires under control sooner also would benefit people in the Granite State.
“A big wildfire in California makes air quality in New Hampshire worse,” McMillan said. “It’s a nice trans-America story.”
Hassan recalled her days as governor when search and rescue teams didn’t have sufficient visibility to fly missions.
“Having been told multiple times we didn’t, it’s tough,” Hassan told the company founders.
Rotor Technologies is “looking to reach a level of technological readiness in 2024,” McMillan said.