Through the hard work of Congressman Dan Lipinski (IL-3), the Illinois congressional delegation, state and local leaders, universities, and private industry, Chicago-based UI LABS is being awarded a $70 million grant from the U.S. Department of Defense to help form the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute. The lab – headquartered on the northern end of Goose Island in Chicago – will look to turn high tech research into new products and good middle class manufacturing jobs.
“One of my top priorities in Congress has been promoting American manufacturing to help create good middle class jobs in northeastern Illinois and across our nation, and one important way to do this is through public-private cooperation,” said Lipinski. “That is why I worked with my colleagues to fight for this federal grant for UI Labs.”
“This Institute has the potential to re-invigorate American manufacturing and put the Chicago area on the cutting edge of manufacturing innovation, creating jobs that so many families desperately need,” stated Lipinski.
The Institute will be a public-private partnership with industry having already promised to contribute more than $250 million. Leading partners on this project include General Electric, Rolls-Royce, Procter & Gamble, Dow, Lockheed Martin, and Siemens.
Congressman Lipinski is a co-sponsor of H.R. 2996, the Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act of 2013, which would authorize the creation of similar institutes across the country that would each be focused on a unique technology, material, or process relevant to advanced manufacturing.
Digital manufacturing is the use of an integrated, computer-based system comprised of simulation, three-dimensional (3D) visualization, analytics and various collaboration tools to create product and manufacturing process definitions simultaneously.