NCMS and ARL open AMMP, attain $15m boost for additive manufacturing in defense

Today the U.S. National Center for Manufacturing Sciences (NCMS) opens its new Advanced Manufacturing, Materials, and Processes (AMMP) Center and Consortium in Aberdeen, Maryland. A collaboration between NCMS and the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL), the AMMP Center is a new major additive manufacturing initiative for the U.S. defense industry, funded with $15 million in support from the government.

Lisa Strama, President and CEO of the NCMS, comments “[AMMP] brings together industry, academia, and government to advance, refine, and transition scientific breakthroughs in materials and machinery,”

“Today is an opportunity to recognize the unanimous pledge of support AMMP is receiving for the scientific breakthroughs, accelerated manufacturing capabilities, stronger and more competitive industrial base, and economic growth it stimulates.”

AMMP program logo. Image via NCMS
AMMP program logo. Image via NCMS

The NCMS Consortium

The NCMS was founded in 1986 in an order by President Ronald Reagan to rejuvenate the machine tool industry. It is a non-profit consortium, headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, reserving membership for organizations with “a substantial manufacturing presence in North America.” As a member, organization are given access to exclusive project calls, e.g. from the U.S. Army and Navy.

To date, the NCMS has awarded approximately $562 million to research and development projects, and has helped execute over 1000 contracts. Recently, the consortium signed an agreement with American aerospace and defense company Moog to develop blockchain security for additive manufacturing within the U.S. Department of Defense.

Army Modernization Strategy

The new AMMP Center was earmarked for launch this summer. At the time 3D Systems was confirmed as a key collaborator. Neal Orringer, VP of alliances & partnerships at 3D Systems confirmed, “3D Systems is proud to have helped NCMS lead this initiative. It’s a tremendous opportunity to partner with key government and industry leaders such as Applied Materials to drive innovation and U.S. competitiveness,”

“This effort is designed to equip our military with the best technology possible at the best value to the taxpayer.”

Site photo of the new AMMP Center. Photo via NCMS
Site photo of the new AMMP Center. Photo via NCMS

The AMMP Center will co-launched with the AMMP Technology Advisory Board (TAB), which is to be spearheaded by Strama and Dr. Cosima Boswell-Koller, NCMS Senior Project Manager and technical lead. The so-called TAB has been formed to assure that activities within the AMMP Center meet with the overarching goals of the ARL and the broader U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM).

Dr. Boswell-Koller concludes, “The AMMP Program is enjoying a lot of early momentum. There are several new project calls, awards, and kick-offs well underway, and our membership base is growing rapidly.”

According to the NCMS, eight ARL-aligned additive manufacturing projects have already been awarded funding.

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Featured image shows a media visualization for the NCMS. Image via NCMS