Hundreds of composites experts from industry, government, and academia gathered at the Knoxville Convention Centre, US, for the launch of the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI).
Led by the University of Tennessee, the IACMI will work to develop new low-cost, high-speed, and efficient manufacturing and recycling process technologies that will promote widespread use of advanced fibre-reinforced polymer composites. Funded with $70 million in federal funds and more than $180 million in nonfederal funds, IACMI says it will collaborate with industry to reduce technical risk and develop a robust supply chain for advanced composite materials in automotive components, wind turbines, and compressed gas storage applications, helping give America’s resurging manufacturing sector a more competitive edge in the global economy.
“The DOE investment in IACMI will catalyse increased production capacity of carbon fibre and other materials important to US leadership in advanced composite manufacturing,” said IACMI CEO, Craig Blue.
The IACMI team, a 123-member consortium headquartered in Tennessee, US, is led and operated by a not-for-profit established by the University of Tennessee Research Foundation that connects manufacturers across the supply chain with universities and national laboratories pioneering advanced composites technology development and research.
“We look forward to working with the composites industry – OEMs, their supply chains, and small and medium enterprises – around accelerating innovation,” said Taylor Eighmy, Co-Chair of IACMI’s board. “Composites are critical to our national economy, and we have a wonderful chance to position our economy at the leading edge for the next few decades.”
IACMI is the fifth institute chosen in support of the President’s overall vision for the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation. The public-private partnership says it was selected through a competitive process led by the Advanced Manufacturing Office within the Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.
In addition to UT and ORNL, the institute’s founding research partners include Colorado (National Renewable Energy Laboratory), Indiana (Purdue University), Michigan (Michigan State University), Ohio (University of Dayton Research Institute), and Kentucky (University of Kentucky).
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