North American Manufacturing Research Institution of SME Launches National Science Foundation-Funded Blue Sky Competition


DEARBORN, Mich., March 29, 2017 — Designed to catalyze new directions within the manufacturing community, the North American Manufacturing Research Institution of SME (NAMRI/SME) has created the David Dornfeld Manufacturing Vision Award and Blue Sky Competition – to be held during the 2017 North American Manufacturing Research Conference/Manufacturing Science and Engineering Conference (NAMRC/MSEC), June 4-8, 2017, in Los Angeles.

“Manufacturing accounts for more than three-quarters of all private research and development in the U.S.,” said Scott Smith, PhD, FSME, professor at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte and a past president of NAMRI/SME. “This competition seeks the radical, challenging competitors to push the limits of what manufacturing’s future may be.”

Funded by the National Science Foundation, abstracts for the inaugural competition will be part of a special “Blue Sky Ideas” track at the conference on Tuesday, June 6, and are being accepted through April 15. Submissions will be judged by a committee consisting of academia, government and industry covering a broad range of manufacturing; and will be judged on challenging existing assumptions and the extent to which they expand the possibilities and horizons of the field.

Accepted authors will present their abstracts during the conference at the University of Southern California. The top presentation, as determined by the committee, will receive the inaugural NAMRI/SME Dornfeld Manufacturing Vision Award. Named after the late University of California at Berkley professor, who was regarded as a global leader in sustainable manufacturing and smart manufacturing, the award recognizes outstanding vision and leadership within the manufacturing community.

“We’re honored to recognize Professor Dornfeld, a fellow and past director of SME, as well as a founder of NAMRC, for his contributions to manufacturing,” said Smith. “His legacy will live on in the future industry pioneers and the commitment they make to advancing our industry.”

To more broadly share the submitted ideas, SME will post links to abstracts and presentation slides following the conference. You can learn more about NAMRI/SME, NAMRC and the competition at

The North American Manufacturing Research Institution of SME (NAMRI/SME) brings together researchers from leading companies, government laboratories, academic institutions and industrial think tanks located around the world for the purpose of advancing the scientific foundation of discrete-parts manufacturing. This group’s work covers refining fundamental technologies and developing emerging technologies and processes for material removal and material forming, as well as research on manufacturing modeling, simulation, monitoring and control systems. Learn more at

NAMRC – North American Manufacturing Research Conference of NAMRI/SME
NAMRC is recognized as North America’s preeminent and longest running international forum for applied research and industrial applications in manufacturing and design with its presentations and publication of original, basic and applied research in advanced manufacturing.

An annual event since 1973, NAMRC advances the scientific foundation of discrete-parts manufacturing leading to next-generation applications of emerging and innovative technology in material removal, forming and additive manufacturing processes and machines, and cyber-physical systems. The conference attracts global academicians, government and industry researchers, engineers, students, and leaders in manufacturing to interact with each other and advance the field. NAMRC features peer-reviewed papers, keynotes, special opportunities for networking and collaboration, and recognition of research implementation, service and achievements. Details available at: 

Source: SME

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