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The Latest News About the US Manufacturing Network

President Barack Obama announced the formation of a National Network for Manufacturing Innovation to strengthen US industry in March 2012 and renewed calls for it in his 2013 and 2014 State of the Union addresses.

Under his vision, the full network, which requires legislation from Congress, would be developed over a decade and consist of up to 45 regional hubs of public-private partnership, little Silicon Valleys of research and development for specific manufacturing technologies.


*Read our special report about the NNMI here* 

June 2015 NNMI Report Cover 

Each would develop specific manufacturing technologies, skilled workers and spin-off businesses in key technology areas.

Here is the latest news on the emerging network:


September 18, 2015
Two Manufacturing Hubs to Share Detroit Facility - MfgEngNews
The Knoxville, TN, manufacturing hub focused on composite manufacturing will share space with the Detroit-based hub focused on lightweighting and materials (LIFT). Vice President Joe Biden announced the move on September 17.  

 US Manufacturing Hub Locations

September 16, 2015
US Energy Department to Commit Up to $70M for Manufacturing Hub - MfgEngNews
The US Energy Department announced it will commit up to $70 million for the next hub in the NNMI, which will focus on deploying sensors, controls and other technology to cut energy use in manufacturing. The selection process for the location, as well as the group to manage the institute, is now open and applications can be submitted online. 


August 28, 2015
US Says Manufacturing Hub to be Based in Silicon Valley - MfgEngNews 
Senior Editor Bill Koenig reports that the recently announced San Jose manufacturing hub, the FlexTech Alliance, will consist of 162 companies, non-profit entities, labs and universities. The institute will receive $75 million in federal funding and more than $96 million from other contributors. 


August 28, 2015
White House unveils new Silicon Valley tech institute - The Detroit News
The White House announced the seventh institute in the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, located in San Jose, CA, focused on next-generation hybrid electronics. The FlexTech Alliance will receive $75 million in federal funding.


July 27, 2015
Vice President Biden Announces New Integrated Photonics Manufacturing Innovation Hub in Rochester, New York - White House
The latest institute is the sixth in the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation and will focus on integrated photonics--for instance, creating "needleless" tests for medical conditions or increasing carrying capacity of broadband communications. The institute brings $610 million in investments from both public and private organizations.


June 6, 2015
Group gears up to bid for smart manufacturing institute - Milwaukee, Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel 
A group of economic strategists from the Milwaukee area are preparing to submit a bid to be the site of the next institute in the NNMI. President Obama is expected to announce the competition for the "smart factory" institute in coming months. Regardless of whether or not the Milwaukee area is chosen, many agree that Wisconsin's manufacturing scene needs to adapt to smart manufacturing, or Industry 4.0, in order to remain competitive.


June 1, 2015
Can US manufacturing move from faxes to robots? - BBC News 
 The Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute (DMDII) in Chicago is focused on advancing manufacturing--an industry that often still considers using fax machines to share information a "state of the art" technology. But will the DMDII's efforts lead to the creation of enough jobs?


May 5, 2015
UTEP named first Satellite Center for America Makes -  
The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), a platinum-level member of America Makes, has been chosen as the institute's first satellite center, in part because of its blend of additive equipment and research capabilities.


April 8, 2015
Regional report spells out advantages of advanced manufacturing - New Hampshire Business Review
A report from Deloitte and the New England Council says that advanced manufacturing has the potential to become an "economic power engine" for the region. While traditional manufacturing declined after the recession, advanced manufacturing was able to bounce back. Some problems remain, however--the lack of skilled workers among them.


March 18, 2015
Obama Announces Ninth Manufacturing Institute
President Obama announced a competition for the location of the ninth manufacturing institute. This institute will focus on textiles and fibers, with possible applications including protective gear for firefighters and new military uniforms. As with the other institutes, funding will be split between the US government and private entities.


February 19, 2015 
Obama Seeks Budget Increase for Manufacturing Network
The total budget for the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation comes to $608 million, according to Manufacturing & Technology News. The Administration’s 2016 budget also seeks $1.93 billion to support the creation of 29 new institutes. 


January 15, 2015
Detroit Manufacturing Institute Opens, Gets New Name - Manufacturing Engineering
Senior Editor Bill Koenig attended the grand opening of the new manufacturing institute in Detroit on January 15. The institute will now be known as LIFT, an acronym for Lightweight Innovations for Tomorrow. 


January 14, 2015
Ford Americas Chief: Manufacturing Hubs Will Lead to Discoveries - Manufacturing Engineering
At a press conference at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Joe Hinrichs of Ford Americas said the manufacturing innovation institutes are a positive step toward advancing manufacturing. He also discussed Ford's efforts in lightweighting, saying "We're actually very far along."


January 12, 2015
ALMMII Will Cut Ribbon to Open Detroit Innovation Acceleration Center January 15 - Press Release
The American Lightweight Materials Manufacturing Innovation Institute officially opens on January 15 in Detroit with  a ribbon cutting ceremony. The center will focus on the advancement of lightweight metals such as aluminum, magnesium, titanium and advanced high-strength steel alloys.


January 9, 2015 
Obama Announces New Manufacturing Institute in Tennessee - Manufacturing Engineering
Senior Editor Bill Koenig covers what we know so far about the next manufacturing hub planned for Tennessee.  

 Obama to launch manufacturing hub during Knoxville visit - Knoxville News Sentinel
President Obama is expected to announce the next manufacturing hub in the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI) today during his visit to Knoxville, Tennessee. Although details haven't been confirmed, the White House's description of the hub aligns with a proposal submitted by Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 2014.  


December 16,2014
Spending bill provides $300 million for advanced manufacturing - The Marion Star

The spending bill that included the RAMI manufacturing bill, supported by Senators Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Roy Blunt (R-Missouri), was passed by the Senate. President Obama is expected to approve the bill.


December 11, 2014
Obama Announces Competitions for Two Manufacturing Hubs - MfgEngMedia
President Barack Obama announced plans for two additional manufacturing hubs, with one centered on smart manufacturing and the other on flexible hybrid electronics. 


December 10, 2014
Reed's bill on manufacturing hubs set to pass - The Buffalo News
Tom Reed's bill, the Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act (RAMI), is set to be passed by Congress. The bill was included in the 2015 spending bill by its Senate sponsors, Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and Roy Blunt (R-Missouri).  


October 23, 2014
Senate must pass RAMI Act to keep manufacturing strong: reader opinion -
David Raby, president and CEO of STI Electronics in Alabama, argues that passing the RAMI Act is critical to keeping American manufacturing thriving.

September 16, 2014
House passes advanced manufacturing bill - Democrat & Chronicle

The Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act, sponsored by Representatives Tom Reed (R-NY) and Joseph P. Kennedy (D-MA), passed the House unanimously.  


June 12, 2014
BIG M 2014: Why Manufacturers Ought to be Institutionalized - MfgEngMedia
Senior Editor Mike Anderson sat in on a panel discussion at the BIG M Event that included Edward Morris, Dennis Kekas, Alan Taub, and William King, who are leaders at America Makes, the Next Generation Power Electronics Innovation Institute (now called "Power America"), LM3I Institute in Canton, MI, and the Digital Lab in Chicago, respectively. Audience members had the chance to ask questions about the manufacturing network.

The Big M - NNMI Symposium

June 3, 2014:
Partners start hashing out details of Chicago's Digital Lab for Manufacturing - Chicago Tribune
Partners in the Digital Lab still have to answer important questions about working together with competitors--who will own intellectual property? Chicago deputy mayor acknowledged that the return "will be over a period of time. It's not going to be instantaneous."


June 1, 2014
Behind Germany's Success Story in Manufacturing - The Wall Street Journal

The Fraunhofer Society, Germany's network of government-backed research institutes for manufacturing, is one of the primary inspirations for the US National Network for Manufacturing Innovation. The German network was started in 1954 and has grown to 67 institutes across the country.  


May 28, 2014
Obama administration announces 12 regions to receive help attracting global manufacturers - AP
Twelve regions of the US have been chosen to receive resources from eleven federal departments, inlcuding Commerce, Labor, Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development. The regions are Southwest Alabama, Southern California, Northwest Georgia, Chicago Metro, South Kansas, Greater Portland in Maine, Southeastern Michigan, the New York Finger Lakes region, Southwestern Ohio Aerospace region, the Tennessee Valley, the Washington Puget Sound region, and the Milwaukee 7 region. 


May 22, 2014
NNMI--A Boon For Smaller Manufacturers? -
Karen Kurek, the national manufacturing leader for McGladrey LLP, says the NNMI will allow small- and medium-sized manufacturers opportunities and resources that they could not afford otherwise, especially the change for collaborative R&D.  


April 15, 2014
Manufacturing innovation is key to boosting growth - The Hill
Robert Atkinson argues that the RAMI Act is necessary in order to compete economically with other countries, as well as bridge the gap between the very early stages of research and commercial applications. 


April 9, 2014
Manufacturing Innovation Bill Advances in Senate - Industry Week
The "Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act," sponsored by Senators Roy Blunt and Sherrod Brown, was passed out of the Senate Commerce Committee today. 


March 24, 2014
Blunt bill to revive manufacturing sector gains steam in Senate - USA Today
Senator Roy Blunt, R-Missouri, is co-sponsor of a bill that will provide funding from the government for the manufacturing hubs to ensure the initiative can thrive even after Obama's term ends.  The bill also has the support of fellow sponsor Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, demonstrating the bipartisan appeal of the manufacturing network.   


March 18, 2014
Obama manufacturing hubs face uphill struggle to create jobs - Reuters 
One of the main goals of the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation is to create more jobs.  But in Youngstown, Ohio, home of the first innovation institute, America Makes, there are still few jobs to be found.  The handful of high-tech jobs created by the hubs may not be enough to boost the unemployment rate in the former steel town. 

March 13, 2014
NM lobbying White House for high-tech manufacturing hub - Albuquerque Journal
The New Mexico Advanced Photonics Manufacturing Consortium is reportedly in Washington DC this week to explain why the state should be consider for one of the next manufacturing hubs. One argument for their case is the state's expertise in optics and photonics technologies, which can be applied to many different industries.   

3D Systems Teams Up with the White House to Transform American Manufacturing - Globe Newswire (Press Release)
3D Systems, a company focused on additive manufacturing and 3D printing, announced today that it is participating in Chicago's Digital Lab.  3D Systems will provide some of its latest software, including its Geomagic line, to the lab. 


March 3, 2014
The Immense Ambition of Chicago's Digital Manufacturing Hub - Chicago Magazine
Chicago's Digital Lab isn't just a physical hub.  It includes the Digital Manufacturing Commons, an open-source software platform that allows companies to share data.  This "virtual lab" adds to the immense ambition of the institute.  

Why Obama is pushing high-tech manufacturing - CNN Money
The advanced and high-tech jobs created by the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation are not the same as manufacturing jobs in the past. Mark Muro of the Brookings Institute notes that the US will not have an advantage in low-end mass production, but can be leaders in innovative (and lucrative) technologies. 


March 2, 2014
Digital Lab for Manufacturing: A new way of making things - The Chicago Tribune
Companies participating in the digital manufacturing institute in Chicago include giants like Boeing, Caterpillar, and General Electric, but there are many smaller companies as well, like TechneGroup, which will be providing software.  Mike Lemon of TechneGroup told the Tribune he's excited for the exposure, but still isn't sure what else his business will gain, especially compared to larger rivals also participating in the hub.  


February 27, 2014
Notre Dame, Purdue, IU involved in manufacturing - AP
Notre Dame is a partner to both the LM3I in Michigan and the Digital Lab in Illinois.  Purdue and Indiana University will partner with the Digital Lab, specializing in digital manufacturing. 


February 26, 2014
NanoSteel Announces Founding Membership in New American Lightweight Materials Manufacturing Innovation Institute (ALMMII) - The NanoSteel Co.

This press release from NanoSteel announces the company's role as a founding member in the Canton, MI, manufacturing hub.  The NanoSteel Company specializes in nano-structured steel material designs.   

Two Colorado universities have starring role in new US advanced manufacturing projects - The Gazette
The Colorado School of Mines in Golden, CO, has been named one of four "core facilities" for the LM3I manufacturing hub in Canton, Michigan.  The University of Colorado at Boulder will work closely with the manufacturing hub in Chicago, Illinois (the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute, or Digital Lab).  CU-Boulder will open a research center to focus on digital manufacturing and cybersecurity. 


February 25, 2014
President Obama Announces Two New Manufacturing Institutes, Launches Competition - The White House
President Obama officially announced the latest manufacturing hubs in Chicago, Illinois and Canton, Michigan, at a press conference today.President Obama in NC This press release from the White House details his plan to boost manufacturing. 

Video: President Obama Speaks on Manufacturing Innovation - The White House
Just after 3 PM on Tuesday, February 25, President Obama gave his official remarks on the manufacturing institutes. In case you didn't catch it live, here's the archived video.     

Bringing it Home: New Hubs Aim to Make Manufacturing Technologies Relevant - MfgEngMedia 
Debbie Holton, SME Director of Industry Strategy & Events, writes that new technology needs to fill a gap in the marketplace in order to get off the ground.  She says that SME bridges the gap between the theoretical (scientists, tinkers, innovators) and the practical (business owners, manufacturers).  SME's network will play a key role in the newest manufacturing institutes and help new technologies go from theory to marketplace.

SME Contributes Workforce and Education Expertise in Support of Digital Lab for Manufacturing - SME
SME will support the new manufacturing innovation institutes with training and workforce development programs.  Dean Bartles, current SME Vice President and Vice President of General Dynamics, is taking an early retirement and assuming the role of executive director for the Digital Lab in Chicago. 

Siemens Giving Software Used for SpaceX to Manufacturing Hub - Bloomberg
Siemens, one of six lead partners in the Chicago manufacturing hub dedicated to digital manufacturing, is giving the institute its PLM software that has been used for SpaceX.  The CEO of Siemens USA told Bloomberg that Europe already has numerous programs dedicated to manufacturing training and the US needs to follow suit.   

Ohio’s EWI, OSU and U-Michigan To Launch New National Manufacturing Institute - Press Release  
EWI teamed up with Ohio State University and the University of Michigan to be founding members of the consortium for LMMII (LM3I), the manufacturing hub based in Canton, Michigan. EWI, OSU and U-M will continue to be key players as the hub launches in the spring. 

WPI's Metal Processing Institute is a Core Facility for LM3I - Press Release
The Metal Processing institute at Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts is one of four academic institutions that will work closely with LM3I in Canton, Michigan. 

Gov. Rick Snyder applauds President Barack Obama’s announcement of metro Detroit innovation hub - MLive
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder released a statement applauding the Canton, Michigan, manufacturing hub, calling Michigan the "comeback state."


February 24, 2014
Michigan and Illinois Win Bid for Obama's Next Manufacturing Hubs - MfgEngMedia
The White House announced that Chicago and Canton, Michigan, are the sites of the next institutes in the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation.  President Obama is expected to make an official announcement during an event Tuesday, February 25. 

Chicago secures digital manufacturing site with help of private funds - Chicago Tribune
Chicago secured the third manufacturing hub this year, beating out MIT and Huntsville, Alabama, by pledging $320 million from private funding.  The Chicago institute will focus on digital manufacturing.

Canton Township supervisor heads to White House for Pres. Barack Obama’s metro Detroit manufacturing institute announcement - MLive
Phil LaJoy, supervisor of Canton Township, will be in attendance at the White House for President Obama's announcement on the most recent manufacturing hubs.  LaJoy told MLive that he did not yet know all the details, but stated that the city is "tremendously excited" to be chosen as the location.    


February 23, 2014
U-M: New Detroit area manufacturing hub to create 10,000 jobs - The Detroit News
The University of Michigan, one of three leading institutions for LM3I, the recently announced manufacturing hub in Canton, Michigan, says the hub will create about 10,000 jobs in the area. 


February 22, 2014
$140M prize: State wins manufacturing institute; will be built in Canton - Detroit Free Press
The White House announces the creation of two adidtional manufacturing hubs, including one in Michigan.  The Canton-based institute will focus on lightweighting and materials manufacturing.   


January 31, 2014
A Network of Little Silicon Valleys - MfgEngMedia
Editor in Chief Sarah Webster addresses the cynicism surrounding the manufacturing renaissance--and why it's entirely wrong.  She asks, "Can we really afford to bow out of the next industrial revolution?"

Silicon Valley to Wide-Bandgap Valley? - MfgEngMedia 
ABB President Greg Scheu discusses the new manufacturing hub at North Carolina State, dedicated to wide bandgap semiconductor technologies.  ABB is a member of the North Carolina consortium and a manufacturer of power electronics.


January 30, 2014
Manufacturing Network Takes Shape - MfgEngMedia
In his 2014 State of the Union address, President Obama calls for the creation of six additional manufacturing innovation institutes this year. His proposed National Network for Manufacturing Innovation would include up to 45 hubs, each specializing in a different technology.       


December 1, 2013
NewsDesk: NAMII Rebrands as 'America Makes' - MfgEngMedia
NAMII changes its name to America Makes shortly after the one year anniversary of its opening. Leadership chose a name they felt represented the additive and rapid communities as a whole.


May 9, 2013
Video: Manufacturing Innovation Institutes Explained in 60 Seconds - The White House Blog
Gene Sperling, Director of the National Economic Council, explains the significance of the manufacturing institutes as part of President Obama's plan to reinvest in manufacturing jobs.


October 1, 2012
NewsDesk: Additive Manufacturing Institute Part of Broader Vision - MfgEngMedia

President Obama proposes a National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, a concept that is endorsed by a manufacturing steering committee. NAMII would be the flagship manufacturing hub. The network (NNMI) needs to be approved by Congress before it can move forward. 


August 16, 2012Debbie Holton
SME to Play Key Role in Additive Institute - MfgEngMedia 
SME announces it will play a key role in the startup of the first manufacturing hub, the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute (NAMII) in Youngstown, Ohio. SME has been a leader in rapid and additive manufacturing technologies since the mid-1980s.


Published Date : 2/24/2014

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