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Pyka builds autonomous electric aircraft that is used by agricultural service providers and farmers as an autonomous tool that makes aerial crop protection safer, more targeted and less harmful to surrounding environments.


When the company needed help expanding their West Oakland facility, which was formerly a steel factory, they called Martine Neider, SFMade Director of Manufacturing Operations, to assist with designing the space to maximize efficiency and productivity. She guided Pyka on the expanded layout of the factory, including on the workstation and workshop configuration as well as storage, equipment, power distribution and safety.


“With the exception of a few custom components and off-the-shelf items, the entire airplane is built, assembled and integrated in our West Oakland factory,” said Elizabeth Goodine, Pyka’s Manufacturing Lead. “We do everything from building parts out of raw materials to assembling electrical components and integrating the airplane.”


When Pyka moved in, they knew the space had some major challenges and needed a total transformation. The long, narrow layout, outdated power distribution, lack of climate control and the need to build a shop infrastructure were high on the list of improvements.


“Martine was instrumental in directing me from overwhelmed to effective in terms of strategy, planning, and execution of the facility expansion plan,” said Goodine. “She also taught me about tenant improvements and how to negotiate lease rates.”


See a slide show of the Pyka facility expansion