Auburn to expand Industry 4.0 research, education, training and innovation capabilities with DoD award

Published: September 13, 2021

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The Interdisciplinary Center for Advanced Manufacturing Systems, or ICAMS, at Auburn University is the recipient of a $7.2 million award from the Department of Defense’s, or DoD, Office of Industrial Policy’s Industrial Base Analysis and Sustainment Program, or IBAS, to encourage small and medium-sized manufacturers to adopt the advanced technologies associated with Industry 4.0 or smart manufacturing. The award will allow the center to increase efforts to improve the skills of the next generation of engineers and the existing workforce to take full advantage of those technologies in their operations.

“With this award, we are building upon our original mission and expanding our research and services in key areas,” said Gregory Harris, ICAMS director and associate professor in the Samuel Ginn College of Engineering's Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering.

Highlights of the funding include:

- Creation of the nation's first cyber-physical manufacturing range housed on a university campus;

- Purchase of additional manufacturing equipment to further develop an Industry 4.0 manufacturing environment, including the creation of a digital manufacturing demonstration cell;

- "Path to the Plains" partnership with Southern Union State Community College, where Southern Union students can take Auburn University courses while completing their associate degree;

- An annual call for undergraduate and graduate research proposals to be evaluated and awarded to those that expand the demonstration, education training and research capabilities of ICAMS;

- Research into inspection technologies to understand how to provide real-time quality data as feedback to adjust equipment controls to continuously improve control limits and reduce the possibility of a defective product;

- The creation of a smart cyber-physical sensing, modeling and control digital twin infrastructure with augmented and mixed reality;

- The extension of annual survey research for three additional years, for a total of a five-year study into technology adoption amid small and medium-sized manufacturers.

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Submitted by: Cassie Montgomery