The Manufacturing Futures Institute (MFI) provides funding and support through a series of ongoing programs.
Postdoctoral fellowship program
The MFI Postdoctoral Fellowship Program seeks both internal and external candidates whose work will support the vision of MFI by demonstrating research excellence and leadership in addressing challenges that further the digitalization of manufacturing.
Proposed research must demonstrate a clear fit with MFI’s mission and areas of academic inquiry including, but not limited to, additive manufacturing, robotics, digital twins, generative manufacturing, micro/nanomanufacturing, biomanufacturing, and manufacturing workforce.
Applicants will need confirmed commitment from a CMU faculty mentor to be considered. Incomplete applications, including those without a CMU faculty mentor’s letter of support, will not be reviewed. Fellowship appointments will be for one year with the option for potential renewal, subject to annual performance review and availability of funds.
Seed funding program (Request for proposals)
Through its annual competition, MFI funds 12-month-long seed projects that align with the MFI mission to inspire, engineer, and lead technological and workforce advances for agile, intelligent, efficient, resilient, and sustainable manufacturing.
The maximum project cost is $200,000, with most projects receiving approximately $100,000. The most recent requests for proposals were issued in November 2021, and awards were announced in February 2022. The next competition for seed funding is expected to be announced in September 2022.
Cost share for proposals
MFI helps with cost share on promising proposals for federal funding that require mandatory cost share, subject to availability of funds. Generally, cost share from departmental and college sources is expected to be sought in parallel. Requests for cost share should be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Manufacturing start-up bridge fund
MFI can help qualified CMU startup teams bridge between research projects and product or process feasibility, subject to availability of funds. This program is managed through the CMU Center for Technology Transfer and Enterprise Creation (CTTEC).
Mill 19 fit out and equipment fund
MFI is building manufacturing research capabilities at its Mill 19 facility and can provide funds for shared resources needed to catalyze and grow its multi-disciplinary manufacturing research capabilities. Discussions related to infrastructure are held periodically through the University Advisory and Advocacy Committee and specific initiatives are guided by outputs from internal MFI workshops and ad hoc committee formation. Suggestions for needed Mill 19 infrastructure to support advanced manufacturing research can be submitted to email@example.com.
Manufacturing PA innovation program
MFI administers the Manufacturing PA Innovation Program, funded through the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development. Its Manufacturing Fellows Initiative supports undergraduate and graduate student fellows at Pennsylvania universities working with Pennsylvania manufacturers. The Program leverages the internationally acclaimed science and engineering talent and discovery capacity of all Pennsylvania’s institutions of higher education to help ensure that Pennsylvania remains a national and international leader in manufacturing and achieves the full economic potential for good well-paying manufacturing jobs.