The U.S. Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announced a total of more than $22 million in funding for nine research projects targeting innovative manufacturing technologies in fields ranging from biopharmaceuticals and electronics to renewable energy sources and energy storage. Funded by NIST's Technology Innovation Program (TIP), the awards will be matched by other funding sources and are expected to result in an estimated $46 million in new advanced manufacturing research over the next three years.
"Keeping our nation's high-tech industries at the forefront of innovation is a key component to maintaining and improving U.S. industrial competitiveness in an increasingly competitive world," U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said. "Through these TIP awards, we will help advance cutting-edge research in major growth sectors of 21st century manufacturing, including renewable energy and advanced pharmaceuticals."
TIP is a merit-based, competitive program that provides cost-shared funding for research projects by single small- or medium-sized businesses or by joint ventures that can include higher education institutions, nonprofit research organizations and national laboratories. The nine projects announced today were selected from 110 proposals in the "Manufacturing and Biomanufacturing: Materials Advances and Critical Processes" competition announced last April.
The competition focused on technologies that could significantly improve manufacturing processes for advanced materials such as nanocomposites or in biomanufacturing, which produces vaccines and other biopharmaceuticals.
TIP promotes technological innovation by providing funding support to transformative, high-risk, high-reward research projects that address critical national needs. TIP awards are limited to no more than $3 million over three years for a single company project and no more than $9 million over five years for a joint venture.
As a non-regulatory agency, NIST promotes U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness by advancing measurement science, standards and technology in ways that enhance economic security and improve our quality of life.