Advanced Computing in the Age of AI | Saturday, August 13, 2022

AMPing Up American Manufacturing 

The American Manufacturing Partnership calls for a national effort to support the creation of good jobs by helping US manufacturers reduce costs, improve quality, and accelerate product development. In an effort to transform advanced manufacturing in the United States, AMP also aims to identify opportunities for investments in R&D, pre-competitive collaboration, and shared facilities and infrastructure. Rebecca Taylor, senior vice president, National Center for Manufacturing Sciences, issues a call to action.

"Today, I'm calling for all of us to come together- private sector industry, universities, and the government- to spark a renaissance in American manufacturing and help our manufacturers develop the cutting-edge tools they need to compete with anyone in the world… With these key investments, we can ensure that the United States remains a nation that 'invents it here and manufactures it here' and creates high-quality, good paying jobs for American workers."

These words, spoken by President Obama, at Carnegie-Mellon University in June, 2011, announced the government’s new Advanced Manufacturing Partnership (AMP).

AMP calls for a national effort to support the creation of good jobs by helping U.S. manufacturers reduce costs, improve quality, and accelerate product development.  In an effort to transform advanced manufacturing in the United States, AMP also aims to identify opportunities for investments in R&D, pre-competitive collaboration, and shared facilities and infrastructure. As digital manufacturers, this is a perfect opportunity for us to weigh in and let our leaders in government know about the importance of modeling and simulation to the industrial base and especially to our small and medium sized companies.

 The Partnership, supported by more than $500 million in existing federal funds, is a government-industry-university initiative with a focus on high tech innovation in manufacturing. Specific plans include creating the next generation of robots, developing energy-efficient manufacturing processes, an advanced materials genome effort, and improving domestic manufacturing capabilities in technologies crucial to our Nation.

While there are not any new funds associated with the Partnership, it does recognize that innovation is not driven by market forces alone, but by government, business, and higher education working together. In addition, it recognizes that collaboration will be required among the federal agencies that are involved in promoting manufacturing innovation which often times is not undertaken.

 AMP is guided by a Steering Committee, which operates within the framework of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) and is comprised of leading experts from industry and academia. It is co-chaired by Andrew Liveris, President, Chairman, and Chief Executive Officer of the Dow Chemical Company, and Susan Hockfield, President of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Presidents of some of the nation's top universities and the CEOs of some of its leading manufacturers make up the AMP Steering Committee.

The work of AMP is carried out for the federal government through four work streams. Each work stream also has a lead industry, academic and government representative:

Technology Development identifies emerging technologies with transformative potential with the express intent that they be commercialized and deployed in the United States.

Policy makes recommendations to the Administration on economic and innovation policies that can directly impact the ability to improve research collaboration and the pathway to commercialization.

Education and Workforce Development identifies tangible actions that will support a robust supply of talented individuals to provide human capital to companies interested in investing in advanced manufacturing activities in the United States.

Shared Facilities and Infrastructure assesses opportunities to de-risk, speed up, and lower the cost of accelerating technology from research to development through unique capabilities and facilities that serve a large base of small- and medium-sized manufacturers.

As digital manufacturers, all work streams are important, but we can put our full support behind the creation of a network of modeling and simulation centers across the nation that can serve as a shared infrastructure for those companies who do not have access to HPC or digital manufacturing.

The government is reaching out for engagement with a diverse group of stakeholders – businesses, educational institutions, labor organizations, government agencies, and professional associations. All are essential to AMP's success. So, how can digital manufacturers get involved? 

 Getting Involved

You can get involved by attending meetings and providing collaborative approaches that will help AMP address the four work streams. Specifically, companies are being asked to submit input covering the following items:

 1. Ideas: Please describe your ideas for projects that could be recommended by one or more of the four AMP work streams. You can also address broader statements on challenges facing manufacturers that must be addressed and/or solutions to such challenges that will sustain and improve manufacturing in the United States. This would also be a great place to reference the proposed network of M&S centers for small and medium sized manufacturers.

 2. Expertise: Identify key resources (organizations, facilities, groups, etc.) within your region or industry that you think AMP ought to draw on as they move forward. Please provide a brief suggestion as to what role each might play.

 3. Existing Regional Efforts: AMP will be active at a regional as well as the national level. Please briefly summarize efforts your organization is already working on in your region through collaborations on advanced manufacturing with regional industry, universities, and state or local government.

You can find additional information as well as the location for providing on-line input at

http://www.eere.energy.gov/manufacturing/amp/index.html

In addition, PCAST is holding a serious of regional meetings to reach out to stakeholders for AMP. The first meeting was held in Atlanta on October 14; upcoming meetings include November 28 in Boston, December 5 in California and December 12 in Michigan. This is a great opportunity to hear from the different Federal Agencies involved in AMP and to provide direct input to them and the Steering Committee that are setting priorities and direction for the program.

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