IACMI Announces Key Partnerships with Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station and Marshall University to Establish Machine Tool Workforce Training Centers

New ACE hubs to help revitalize American manufacturing

Knoxville, Tenn., July 19, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The Institute for Innovation in Advanced Composite ManufacturingÒ (IACMI) today announced two new partnerships with the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES) in College Station, Texas and Marshall University in Huntington, West Virginia. These partnerships aim to revitalize American manufacturing with a focus on the machine tool industry. Machine tools are a fundamental part of America’s advanced manufacturing capabilities, which are essential to the country’s national security and continued economic vitality.

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America’s Advanced Machine Tool Workforce Training Centers to Help Revitalize American Manufacturing

The new partnerships will advance America’s Cutting Edge (ACE), a joint Department of Defense (DoD) and Department of Energy (DOE) initiative launched in 2020 to restore American leadership in the machine tool industry through to transformative thinking, technological innovation and workforce development. . Increasing the number of training centers is a key component of ACENet, an emerging national network of regional machine tool innovation and workforce development centers. The addition of ACE hubs in these two areas will benefit residents and the crafting ecosystem. Texas, West Virginia, Ohioand Kentucky.

“TEES is proud to partner with the DoD and IACMI to bring this program to Texas,” said Scott Terry, director of community and small business initiatives for the SecureAmerica Institute, powered by TEES. “ACE offers a unique workforce opportunity that can truly have a valuable impact for people and industry. We have already generated a lot of interest from secondary schools, secondary education institutions, trade schools and manufacturers, and we look forward to working with many more partners across the state.

Marshall University is thrilled to partner with this national initiative to revitalize American manufacturing,” said the President. Brad D. Smith. “Robert C. Byrd Marshall Institute (RCBI) – West Virginia Advanced Manufacturing Technology Center – has helped manufacturers in our state and region for over 30 years and has provided machinist training to thousands of people. We engage manufacturers on a daily basis, so we are acutely aware of their labor needs and are used to developing innovative solutions to meet those needs. This partnership with IACMI will greatly expand our efforts to prepare individuals for West Virginia, Ohio and Kentucky for manufacturing jobs in demand right here at home. »

IACMI, through an agreement with the DoD’s Industrial Base Analysis and Sustainment (IBAS) Program, conducts an ACE Industrial Skills Training Program to evolve workforce pipelines with emphasis on machine tool and advanced machining. “We have a critical workforce skills gap in this country when it comes to machine tool resources,” said IACMI Membership Director Ms. Joannie Harmon said. “ACE’s training component is intended to help our country recover, advance, and maintain technical and manufacturing positions – all to enable a strong, resilient, and responsive American industrial base.”

M/s. Adele Ratcliffdirector of the IBAS program, said: “A lot of people like to talk about innovators and entrepreneurship, but the real craftsmanship of something is built into the manufacturing process. Most anything that is manufactured at scale uses a machine tool. If you know how to do it, then you know how to innovate faster. We want to restore innovation to the American machine tool industry.

To that end, the DoD and DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), along with IACMI, created ACE, a public-private partnership designed to help close the skills gap and restore American dominance in the machine tool technology and innovation. Through ACE, the DoD implemented a national CNC machining training program developed by University of TennesseeKnoxville, professor Tony Schmitz. The program brings together the scientific expertise of ORNL’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility and the proven workforce development capabilities of IACMI. The first hub beyond Knoxville was announced in April 2022 in Greensboro, North Carolina at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University (NC A&T).

Using advanced computing, robotics, and materials design capabilities, ACE is rapidly developing innovative machine tool technologies that dramatically improve accuracy, efficiency, and productivity, all critical to restoring America’s global competitiveness. in the machine tool industry and, by extension, in advanced manufacturing. The ACE approach places manufacturers at the center of its strategy. ACE is focused on training new experts, improving profitability, especially for small and medium-sized manufacturers and machine shops, researching and developing productivity innovations, and developing partnerships to commercialize the advancements.

ACE is already transferring the resulting technologies to US machine tool manufacturers. A tool developed by ACE has saved small and medium-sized American machine tool shops more than 55,000 machine hours and $5 million in costs, with potential savings for all of US industry reaching into the billions in the approximately 30,000 machine shops in the United States

ACE uses free hands-on online and in-person training to connect top national experts with students and tenured industrial workers from all backgrounds, education levels and work experience to catalyze awareness and interest in all facets of machining, including software development, metrology, design, operation and entrepreneurship. To date, ACE has provided online courses in Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machining to over 2,500 students in all 50 states and in-person bootcamp-style training to over 100 students, all at no cost. for attendees.

“People like to do things, and when they do they feel good about themselves,” Ms Ratcliff added. “The ACE program allows people to experience machining often for the first time. By expanding these opportunities for more people to get hands-on training, we hope to inspire the next generation of makers in this country.”

About the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station

As an engineering research agency of Texas, the Texas A&M Engineering Experiment Station (TEES) conducts quality research focused on global issues; strengthens and expands the state workforce through educational partnerships and training; and develops and transfers technology to industry. TEES partners with academic institutions, government agencies, industries, and communities to solve problems to improve quality of life, promote economic development, and improve education systems.

About Marshall University and RCBI

For more than 30 years, the Robert C. Byrd Institute (RCBI) in Marshall University served as a one-stop resource for makers, entrepreneurs, and fabricators of all sizes and ages. RCBI’s Advanced Manufacturing Technology Centers provide state-of-the-art equipment, innovative skills training and comprehensive industry expertise so entrepreneurs and existing businesses can innovate, create jobs and thrive. Encouraging the future industrial workforce is a key part of RCBI’s outreach through its hands-on STEM camps that introduce students to engineering, 3D printing, computer-aided design and robotics while exploring all facets of manufacturing.

About the IACMI The Institute of Composites

IACMI – The Composites Institute is a community of more than 130 members from industry, universities, national laboratories, and federal, state, and local government agencies working together to accelerate design, manufacturing, technical innovation, and solutions advanced workforces to enable a cleaner environment and a more sustainable, secure, and competitive U.S. economy. IACMI is managed by the Collaborative Composite Solutions Corporation (CCS), a non-profit organization created by the University of Tennessee Research Foundation. A production UNITED STATES IACMI is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Manufacturing Office, as well as key state and industry partners.

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SOURCE IACMI – The Institute of Composites