Manufacturing Futures Initiative

The future of manufacturing

The Manufacturing Futures Initiative (MFI) is a campus-wide initiative that seeks to enable the future of manufacturing by bringing about a new era of human-machine collaboration that will advance manufacturing, the workforce, and economic development.

Innovation in advanced manufactured products is pivotal to national security (from microprocessors and sensors to lightweight materials), energy security (energy generation and storage), and the future of work. Yet, the path from new material and process discovery to commercial reality has historically at best been haphazard and disjointed. For the U.S. to remain a global leader, especially in times of extreme fiscal constraints on science, will require a revolution.

Launched through a generous donation from the Richard King Mellon Foundation, MFI aims to accelerate discovery to commercialization in manufacturing through end-to-end data collection and analysis, which includes strategies to:

Accelerating materials and process discovery. Identifying new product opportunities. Reinventing manufacturing systems and deployment. Reinventing manufacturing systems and deployment. Democratizing workforce training. Aligning technology innovation policy.

Source: College of Engineering

Advanced Manufacturing and the Economy

Advanced manufacturing jobs are better for the people and the economy.

Advanced Manufacturing accounts for 13% of U.S. jobs, and 19% of U.S. GDP, and supports 3.5 more jobs in comparison with 2.2 jobs in other sectors.

Collaboration between industry and universities

Through MFI, CMU will be connected to the innovation pipeline spurred by the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Institute (ARM) and the rest of the Manufacturing USA institutes – and build Pittsburgh into the country’s leading manufacturing hub.

The initiative will attract and collaborate with industry, as well as public, private, and academic partners, with a mission to accelerate adoption of new technology through interdisciplinary research on materials discovery, product design, robotics and automation, machine learning, policy, workforce training, and education. 


Carnegie Mellon University's impact

Carnegie Mellon University is uniquely situated to help the Pittsburgh region fulfill its potential as a manufacturing hub of the future. The university's world leadership in advanced manufacturing technologies, artificial intelligence, integrated design and entrepreneurship, the science of learning, and technology policy, coupled with CMU’s unparalleled ability to work problems at disciplinary boundaries, and the generous capital and infrastructure investment of the Richard King Mellon Foundation, are enabling CMU to envision and accelerate the world into the physical and artificial future unlike any other.

Students in additive manufacturing lab.

Source: College of Engineering