May 10, 2012

U.S. government is planing something big - reshape American manufacturing by launch a $60 million 3D printing research and educational program - a new 3D printing institute.

The program will be managed by various federal agencies, including Defense, the Energy Department, and the National Science Foundation.

The Department of Defense will take the first lead: fund $30 million from fiscal 2012 through 2014, and $18.8 billion is expected to be spent in fiscal 2012.

"This pilot Institute will serve as a technical center of excellence, providing the innovation infrastructure to support manufacturing enterprises of all sizes and ensure that the U.S. manufacturing sector is a key pillar in an enduring and thriving economy," according to the Air Force Research Laboratory's solicitation issued on May 8.

The Pentagon is soliciting nonprofit organizations and universities to launch the pilot. "A proposer's day for the pilot program will be held May 16. Proposals are due on June 14."

Any university or research institute that eventually hosts the new institute is expected to get a budget of $120 million. However The Air Force solicitation says the institute must have a business plan to become financially sustainable within five years.

For military 3D printing means a way to save cost on making new defense technologies or weapons, for example soldiers can print out replacement parts at forward bases near battlefields. But for the Department of Energy it could possibly cut back on the energy cost of manufacturing by 50 percent within 10 years.

 

Source: Livescience


Posted in 3D Printing Technology

 

 

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