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Top 14 of 2014: The future of manufacturing

December 27, 2014

Logo of the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation InstituteAs 2014 draws to a close, NIU Today offers a look back at 14 of the top stories from the year.

No. 4

In February, NIU announced a developing role in a planned $320 million Digital Lab for Manufacturing unveiled by President Obama at the White House.

Planned for Goose Island in Chicago, the Digital Lab will bring together industry, academia and government partners. Obama envisions the Digital Lab as the nation’s flagship research institute for digital manufacturing – a world-class, first-of-its-kind manufacturing hub with the capabilities, innovation and collaboration necessary to transform American manufacturing.

The University of Illinois-affiliated UI Labs, a Chicago-based research and commercialization collaborative, will manage the lab that is expected to significantly raise the Chicago region’s profile for cutting-edge manufacturing.

“What a great honor to be part of such an initiative coming out of the White House,” said Promod Vohra, dean of the NIU College of Engineering and Engineering Technology. “We remain committed to innovation, global competitiveness, manufacturing optimization and to the use of technology to advance manufacturing in the U.S. We will leverage our partnership with the manufacturing community in the region to quickly advance the objectives of the grant.”