The Department of Defense today announced that the Office of Local Defense Community Cooperation has awarded six (6) grants totaling approximately $30 million under the Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program. The Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program makes long-term investments in critical skills, facilities, workforce development, research and development, and small business support to strengthen the base innovation in national security.
On August 16, 2022, Dr. William A. LaPlante, Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment, designated six consortia as Defense Manufacturing Communities and instructed the Office of Defense Community Cooperation to invite them to submit grant applications based on the competitiveness of their respective scopes and funding in response to the Defense Manufacturing Community Support Program May 20, 2022 Notice of Funding Opportunity.
The awards come from funding earmarked for fiscal year 2022 and leverage an additional $9,570,929 million in non-federal funds for a total investment of $39,314,390.
“The Department must implement a nationwide manufacturing strategy by collaborating with public, private and academic partners,” LaPlante said. “These defense manufacturing consortia will do just that by working to accelerate the development of critical minerals, help bolster the nation’s shipbuilding workforce, bolster cybersecurity efforts, augment energy storage technologies and accelerating microelectronics and semiconductor processes – all national security priorities.
“A resilient and advanced manufacturing base is essential to our mission to defend this nation and protect our people,” LaPlante added. “In addition to improving our domestic supply chains and reducing our reliance on foreign materials, building strong manufacturing partnerships enhances innovation and competition and generates a skilled and diverse talent pool.”
The scholarships are as follows:
- $4,999,634 to the Mississippi Department of Employment Security, Mississippi-Shipbuilding Industry Preparedness for National Security Consortium, to undertake a $6,694,579 project to strengthen national security by modernizing Mississippi’s shipbuilding industry by improving the capacity, capacity, competitiveness and resilience of the sector. The project will create a skilled and diverse talent pool for the region’s shipbuilding industry, accelerate the adoption of Industry 4.0 manufacturing practices in the shipbuilding supply chain, and develop advanced solutions designed to improve worker safety. Consortium members will implement region-specific strategies to support each objective, ensuring partners have broad reach and lasting impact.
- $5,000,000 to the Illinois Defense Manufacturing Consortium (ILDMC) Board of Directors led by the University of Illinois to undertake a $6,603,250 project to launch a molding center of excellence, forging and energy storage to introduce new offerings, end-to-end solutions, innovative manufacturing technologies, and advanced workforce training modules targeting underrepresented populations. The ILDMC will ensure that the casting and forging industry is more productive, innovative and focused on the needs of the Department of Defense.
- $5,000,000 to Rhode Island Manufacturing led by the University of Rhode Island Research Foundation to Accelerate the Defense Ecosystem Consortium to undertake a $6,500,000 project to address weaknesses in the maritime defense industrial base by bolstering workforce training or retraining or recruitment and retention, and expanding assistance to small businesses to support automation, robotics and cyber resilience . The project will provide intensive technical assistance to a minimum of 25 small businesses, educate and train 675 students and workers using enhanced offerings from the Manufacturing Innovation Institute, and launch an innovative assessment education model to improve capacity evaluation and vendor matching for the Department of Defense supply chain. businesses.
- $5,000,000 to the New Jersey Manufacturing Extension Program, Inc., led by the New Jersey Defense Manufacturing Community Consortium, to undertake a $6,500,000 project to support the Joint Picatinny Arsenal Center of Excellence for firearms and ammunition to meet key needs for advanced manufacturing technology and create transition opportunities for new defense techniques. The project will support ecosystem capacity building in technology-driven market intelligence and focus on training, retraining or recruiting and retaining the workforce, including that of women , underrepresented minorities and veterans, military personnel and their families transitioning to manufacturing careers.
- $4,743,827 to the Recovered Elements Supply Chain (SCORE) Consortium led by SAE Government Technologies to undertake a $6,316,561 project to accelerate the development of domestic manufacturing supply chains for critical minerals in engaging in parallel development with organizations in the upstream and downstream segments, reaching commercial capabilities in a matter of years, not decades. Through the implementation of new modular, advanced and highly selective separation technologies, SCORE will use mining and industrial waste to build a fully capable national supply chain and skilled workforce that requires no new mining. nor any processing abroad. SCORE’s primary focus will be the mining of scandium and its integration into the aluminum alloy supply chain, supporting domestic manufacturing through casting, welding and additive (3D printing) pathways. SCORE will establish a sustainable manufacturing supply chain within three years in the five-state area of Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Michigan and Wisconsin.
- $5,000,000 to the Microelectronics Precision Rapid Innovation and Scaling Manufacturing Network Consortium led by the University of Texas at Austin to undertake a $6,700,000 project to provide accelerated processes for advanced microelectronics research and commercialization, the business incubation and acceleration, small business services and supply chain development with new levels of integration and sustainability, in a region that includes some of the major assets and a skilled workforce of the country’s semiconductor and defense industry.
The Defense Manufacturing Communities Support Program is authorized by Section 846 of Public Law 115-232, which allowed the Secretary of Defense to establish a program to designate and support consortia as manufacturing communities defense in order to strengthen the industrial base of national security.
For more information about these programs, visit the Local Defense Community Cooperation Office website at https://oldcc.gov/defense-manufacturing-community-support-program.