SANDUSKY -- Congresswoman Kaptur said current tests underway here illustrate the value of NASA's Plum Brook station to America's space program.

Congresswoman Kaptur viewed the fairing testing that is currently underway in Sandusky on the new Falcon Heavy, the most powerful rocket in the world.

Congresswoman Kaptur toured NASA Plum Brook with Stephanie Bednarek, government affairs representative for SpaceX, Jim Free, director of the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland and David Stringer, Director of the Plum Brook Management Office at NASA Glenn. 

"Clearly Plum Brook is a vital asset to our nation as we push the envelope and maintain our nation's lead in space technology," said Congresswoman Kaptur.

"I am so pleased that SpaceX and other companies recognize that Plum Brook has distinctive capabilities."

Congresswoman Kaptur joined NASA Glenn Research Center director Jim Free and officials from the SpaceX Corporation on a tour of Plum Brook's vacuum chamber, which is the largest in the world (122 feet tall and 100 feet in diameter).

California-based Space X recently conducted the second of 12 planned cargo resupply missions to the International Space Station, hauling mission-critical equipment to the station and returning with other material.

The Falcon Heavy rocket features a payload capacity almost twice that of the now-retired Space Shuttle