Revitalizing American manufacturing with robots

Revitalizing American manufacturing with robots

The Department of Defense awards 14th institute with Advanced Robotics Manufacturing (ARM) Innovation Hub in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

January 31, 2017

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania – The Department of Defense awarded the 14th Manufacturing USA institute – the Advanced Robotics Manufacturing (ARM) Innovation Hub – to American Robotics Inc. The eighth DoD-led institute, the ARM Institute joins the Manufacturing USA network in its collective effort to help revitalize American manufacturing and incentivize companies to invest in new technology development in the United States.

Headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the winning consortium – comprised of state and local governments, industry, universities, community colleges, and non-profit organizations from across the country – contributed $173 million, to be combined with $80 million in federal funding. The substantial cost matching reflects the importance the U.S. robotics community places on this institute and its value to U.S. businesses, academia, and state and local governments. The ARM Institute, with founding industrial and academic partners in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, and Wisconsin will organize the current fragmented domestic capabilities in manufacturing robotics technology and better position the United States, relative to global competition.

The use of robotics is already present in manufacturing environments, but today's robots are typically expensive, singularly purposed, challenging to reprogram, and require isolation from humans for safety. Robotics are increasingly necessary to achieve the level of precision required for defense and other industrial manufacturing needs, but the capital cost and complexity of use often limits small to mid-size manufacturers from utilizing the technology. The ARM Institute's mission therefore is to create and then deploy robotic technology by integrating the diverse collection of industry practices and institutional knowledge across many disciplines – sensor technologies, end-effector development, software and artificial intelligence, materials science, human and machine behavior modeling, and quality assurance – to realize the promises of a robust manufacturing innovation ecosystem. Technologies ripe for significant evolution within the ARM Institute include, but are not limited to, collaborative robotics, robot control (learning, adaptation, and repurposing), dexterous manipulation, autonomous navigation and mobility, perception and sensing, and testing, verification, and validation.

The ARM Institute joins the Manufacturing USA institute network, a program with industry, academia, and government participants who co-invest in the development of cutting edge manufacturing technologies and capabilities. Each Manufacturing USA institute focuses on a technology area critical to future competitiveness – such as additive manufacturing, integrated photonics, or smart sensors.  The federal government has committed more than $1 billion, matched by more than $2 billion in non-federal investment, across the Manufacturing USA network. Together, the Manufacturing USA institutes are already enhancing U.S. competitiveness in advanced manufacturing – from helping Youngstown, Ohio attract more than $90 million in new manufacturing investments and training 14,000 workers in the fundamentals of 3D printing for business to supporting companies like X-FAB in Lubbock, Texas upgrade to cost-competitive, next-generation semiconductors and sustain hundreds of jobs.

The ARM Institute, the newest part of Manufacturing USA, includes:

123 industrial partners, including ABB Inc., ACUTRONIC, AeroCision LLC, Aerospace Components Manufacturers Inc., Agility Robotics Inc., Airbus, Amazon Robotics LLC, ANSYS, Applied Dexterity, Applied Robotics Inc., Arconic, ARCOR Laser Services, ATI Industrial Automation, Automated Dynamics, Axis, Barnes Group Inc. (Barnes Aerospace), Bimba Manufacturing, BirdBrain Technologies LLC, Bluewater Defense Inc., BluHaptics, BMW Manufacturing, Bridgestone Americas Inc., CapSen Robotics, CHOMARAT, Citrine Informatics, Clearpath Robotics, Cognizant, Concept Systems Inc., Dassault Systemes Americas Corp., Deloitte Consulting LLP, Delphi Automotive Systems LLC, DENSO Manufacturing Tennessee Inc., Digital Manufacturing Services LLC, Diverse Automation Inc., Duro UAS, Eaton, Enfield Technologies, ESCO Cor., Euclid Automation LLC, FANUC America Corp., FedEx Ground, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, ficonTEC (USA) Corp., Fortress Academy, FSI Advanced Research Inc., FuelCell Energy, GE, General Dynamics Electric Boat, General Dynamics Land Systems, General Motors, GLOBALFOUNDRIES, Guided Particle Systems Inc., Honeybee Robotics, HP Inc., Ingersoll Machine Tools, Innotronics, Insightfil, Intelligent Automation Inc., Interface Technologies, International Electronic Machines Corp., Ion Pacific Limited, Jabil, John Deere, JTEKT North America Corp., Katok Inc., Kinema System, KRTKL, Lockheed Martin Corp., Lula Robotics Inc., Luna Innovations Inc., MassRobotics Inc., MathWorks, Means Engineering Inc., Modbot, MPI Inc., MTI Instruments Inc., National Fluid Power Association, National Instruments Corp., National Oilwell Varco Inc., Near Earth Autonomy, Neya Systems LLC, Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., NVIDIA Corp., Pack Flow Concepts LLC, Parker Hannifin, PCC Structurals Inc., PEKO Precision Products Inc., PJ Dick, Polaris Industries Inc., Prendo Systems Inc., Raytheon, RE2 Robotics, Real-Time Innovations Inc., Rethink Robotics, RightHand Robotics, Robert Bosch LLC, Robodub, Robomatter Inc., Rockwell Automation Inc., Schlumberger Technology Corp., Sewbo, Inc., Siemens Corp., Sikorsky Aircraft, Silicon Valley Robotics, SimInsights, Smokie Robotics Inc., Spirit Aerosystems Inc., Staubli Corporation, STEP Tools Inc., Tethers Unlimited Inc., The Boston Consulting Group, The Hershey Co., The Robotics Hub, Umbra Cuscinetti Inc., United Technologies Research Center, Vecna Technologies Inc., Vistex Composites, Wason Technology LLC, Wearable Robotics Association Inc., Westinghouse Electric Co., Xuare, LLC, Yaskawa America Inc. (Motoman Robotics Division), and York Exponential.

Forty academic and academically affiliated partners, including Asnuntuck Community College, Auburn University, Butler County Community College, Carnegie Mellon University, Clemson University, Community College of Allegheny County, Connecticut State Colleges and Universities, Greenville Technical College, Marquette University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Michigan State University, Northeastern University, Northwestern University, Oregon State University, Purdue University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Rice University, Rochester Institute of Technology, Tennessee State University, Texas A&M University, University of California at Berkeley, University of Colorado-Boulder, University of Connecticut, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University of Louisville, University of Maryland, University of Massachusetts Lowell, University of Michigan, University of South Carolina, University of Southern California, University of Texas at Dallas, University of Washington, Vanderbilt University, West Virginia University, Westmoreland County Community College, Wichita Area Technical College, Wichita State University, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Yale University, and Youngstown State University.

Sixty-four government and nonprofit partners, including Advanced Functional Fabrics of America, Allegheny Conference on Community Development, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, California Governor's Office of Business and Economic Development, Catalyst Connection, Clean Energy Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute, City of Pittsburgh, Commonwealth of Massachusetts Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development, Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology, Inc., Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development, CONNSTEP, County of Allegheny, Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute, Empire State Development, FIRST, FuzeHub, Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation, Idaho National Laboratory, IEEE GlobalSpec, Inc., Innovation Works, Innovative Manufacturing Center, International Consortium for Advanced Manufacturing Research, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, Manex, MANTEC, Manufacturers Resource Center, Manufacturing Skills Standards Council, MassMEP, Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center, Mid-America Manufacturing Technology Center, National Association of Workforce Boards, National Center for Supply Chain Technology Education, National Energy Technology Laboratory, National Urban League, NCDMM, Nextflex, Northeastern Pennsylvania Industrial Resource Center, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oregon Manufacturing Extension Partnership, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center, Regional Industrial Development Corporation, Robot Garden, Sandia National Laboratories, Savannah River National Laboratory, SME, Software Engineering Institute, South Carolina Department of Commerce, South Carolina Manufacturers Alliance, South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership, Southern Alliance for Advanced Vehicle Manufacturing Center, Southwest Research Institute, State of Kansas, State of Oregon, STEMconnector, The Culinary Institute of America, Three Rivers Workforce Investment Board, TMAC South Central, Urban League of Greater Pittsburgh, Wichita Manufacturer's Association, Workforce Alliance of South Central Kansas, and York Young Manufacturers.

Source: Manufacturing USA