DoD Manufacturing USA institutes increase American competitiveness in advanced manufacturing by facilitating technology transfer and training the manufacturing workforce. In fulfillment of that goal, on May 25, 2017, the State of Massachusetts announced a $2.2 million grant to MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory to support the opening of the Defense Fabric Discovery Center. The Defense Fabric Discover Center is a partnership between the Advanced Functional Fabrics of America (AFFOA) Manufacturing USA institute, MIT’s Lincoln Laboratory, and the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center (NSRDEC).
Announced in April 2016, AFFOA was created to enable a manufacturing-based revolution by transforming fibers, yarns, and fabrics into highly sophisticated, integrated and networked devices and systems. AFFOA recently announced the creation of the Defense Fabric Discovery Center to provide a product prototyping facility in support of advanced defense functionality demonstrations in the fiber and fabric arena. The Defense Fabric Discovery Center will allow DoD to act as a first adopter of technologies in the DoD’s products, advancing them to commercial products, much like we’ve seen in historical examples like radar and microwaves. The Defense Fabric Discovery Center is completely unique in the portfolio of DoD Manufacturing USA institutes and is a testament to the creativity of the AFFOA team, the leadership of both NSRDEC and Lincoln Labs, and the investment made by the State of Massachusetts.
The State of Massachusetts press release can be found here: http://www.mass.gov/hed/press-releases/administration-awards-2m-to-fiber-and-textile-center.html.
For more information about DoD’s support of Manufacturing USA, please go to http://www.businessdefense.gov/Programs/Manufacturing-USA-Institutes/.