IUPUI Lands Walmart Jobs Grant

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IUPUI is one of seven schools to receive a grant from the Walmart U.S. Manufacturing Innovation Fund. The university says the nearly $300,000 in funding will support a project focusing on improving plastic injection tooling manufacturing through 3-D printing. August 15, 2014

News Release

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Today, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) was awarded a Walmart U.S. Manufacturing Innovation Fund from Walmart, the Walmart Foundation and the United States Conference of Mayors (USCM).

The announcement came at the 2014 U.S. Manufacturing Summit in Denver where a total of seven leading research and development institutions were awarded $4 million in grants to create new processes, ideas, and jobs that will foster America’s growing manufacturing footprint.

“Researchers at many of America’s best universities are hard at work on tough manufacturing challenges,” said Kathleen McLaughlin, president of the Walmart Foundation. “We are excited to support the development of innovative solutions, which we hope will unlock new opportunity for manufacturing in this country.”

The $291,202 grant was awarded in support of IUPUI’s research project, “Optimal Plastic Injection Molding Tooling Design and Production through Advanced Additive Manufacturing,” for two years (2014-2016).

The project’s goal is to reduce the cost and increase the performance and versatility of U.S.-manufactured plastic injection tooling through experimentally-supported, multi-scale, thermo-mechanical topology optimization methods and metal additive manufacturing (3D printing).

Additive manufacturing allows for complex injection tooling production but is about 50 percent more expensive than traditional machining. The project’s proposed optimization approach leads to the generation of lightweight, high-performance and cost-effective injection tooling through additive manufacturing. A 30-percent cost reduction and a 20-percent performance increase are expected with the optimized design. The IUPUI research team is comprised of these professors: Andr?s Tovar (PI), Hazim

El-Mounayri, Jing Zhang, Doug Acheson and Razi Nalim.

“I’m delighted that this important research project was recognized with a Walmart U.S. Manufacturing Innovation Fund grant,” said David J. Russomanno, dean, Purdue School of Engineering and Technology at IUPUI. “We have world-class faculty in the area of advanced manufacturing. Their expertise will be applied to overcome some of the impediments to growing consumer goods manufacturing in Indiana and

across the entire United States.”

“This year’s grant recipients represent the ingenuity and inventive thinking that could ultimately unlock the full potential of manufacturing in the U.S.,” said Cindi Marsiglio, Walmart vice president of U.S. sourcing

and manufacturing. “We’re thrilled the Walmart Foundation is supporting the efforts of IUPUI to transform the processes that will ultimately drive resurgence in American manufacturing.”

The Fund, which focuses on the development of domestic manufacturing with a specific goal of advancing the production or assembly of consumer products in the U.S., will provide a total of $10 million in grants over the next five years.

This year’s grant recipients were selected for their ability to address two key areas that currently present barriers to increased domestic manufacturing:

-Reducing the cost of textiles manufacturing, including home textiles and apparel, in the U.S. by addressing obstacles throughout production.

-Improving common manufacturing processes with broad application to many types of consumer products.

"We are so pleased that our organization has pursued this partnership with the Walmart Foundation to spur job creation in America's cities," said USCM CEO and Executive Director Tom Cochran. "Manufacturing is coming back to this country, and the nation's mayors want to support that wherever possible."

“Indy is outpacing other cities as a leader in the high-tech and research industries. The success of anchor institutions like IUPUI is vital to the city’s future. Their research project will play a role in attracting talent and employers to Indy for years to come,” said Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard.

The Innovation Fund is another milestone in Walmart’s broader commitment to help revitalize U.S.-based manufacturing. In January 2013, Walmart announced the retailer would buy an additional $250 billion in products supporting American manufacturing and American jobs by 2023.

Together, these commitments represent a significant investment that will help accelerate the pace of U.S. manufacturing growth. By making production in the U.S. more cost effective and efficient, the global retailer believes it can bring its customers an increasing number of American-made products and ultimately create more jobs in communities across the country.

Source: IUPUIAugust 14, 2014

News Release

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Seven leading research and development institutions were awarded a total of $4 million in grants to create new processes, ideas, and job creation that will foster America’s growing manufacturing footprint.

The fund, which focuses on the development of domestic manufacturing with a specific goal of advancing the production or assembly of consumer products in the U.S., will provide a total of $10 million in grants over the next five years.

“Innovation is part of the heart and soul of Walmart,” said Michelle Gloeckler, Walmart’s executive president of consumables and U.S. manufacturing. “By investing in American ingenuity originating everywhere from the research lab to the assembly line, we can transform our approach to manufacturing to be more cost-effective and efficient. We can bring more jobs and more production back into American communities.”

The grant recipients were selected for their ability to address two key areas that currently present barriers to increased domestic manufacturing.

Reducing the cost of textiles manufacturing, including home textiles and apparel, in the U.S. by addressing obstacles throughout production.

Improving common manufacturing processes with broad application to many types of consumer products.

“It’s only fitting to work with the nation’s largest retailer on this initiative, a company that is committed to U.S. manufacturing and creating more jobs to help boost the U.S. economy,” said Kevin Johnson, President of the U.S. Conference of Mayors and mayor of Sacramento. “The projects recognized today are some of the best ways we’ve seen to bring American manufacturing into the Cities 3.0 era, helping to create hubs of innovation, entrepreneurship, and technology. Cities 3.0 is the next era of the American city, where cities are becoming the laboratories and incubators of change by supporting projects like the ones recognized today."

The 2014 Walmart U.S. Manufacturing Innovation Fund grant winners are:

-Georgia Tech Research Corporation for innovation of thread-count-based fabric motion control, a critical enabling technology for the automated production of sewn goods.

-Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis (IUPUI) to advance and accelerate the industrial implementation of metal 3-D printing for the manufacturing of plastic injection tooling as an alternative to current metal-shaping practices.

-North Carolina State University College of Textiles to address challenges to manufacturing of furniture cushions in the U.S. by implementing new technologies in both fabric printing and cut-and-sew automation.

-Oregon State University to develop two novel alternative mold fabricating approaches, and evaluate for functionality, precision and cost reduction potential.

-Texas Tech University to support collaborative research on cotton breeding and biotechnology, cotton production, and various aspects of textile manufacturing, dyeing efficiency and specialty finishes.

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