America Makes Wraps Up Successful Scenario Testing for Crisis Response Program
Successful tests showcase additive manufacturing as a necessary component of U.S. supply chain resiliency.
May 27, 2021
America Makes has completed a series of crisis scenario tests for its Advanced Manufacturing Crisis Production Response (AMCPR) program. The successful tests show the technology’s potential as a solution to various supply chain crises.
The AMCPR program originated from the Institute’s role in the industry’s coordinated response to the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE). America Makes launched an online Exchange portal to match manufacturing capabilities with PPE needs, working with the Federal Drug Administration, Department of Veteran Affairs, and the National Institutes of Health to create a regulatory framework to ensure 3D printed PPE could be quickly produced and reviewed for safe use.
The success of the response effort, which helped frontline workers obtain hundreds of thousands of pieces of critical PPE supplies from quality manufacturers across the country, led the Department of Defense to award America Makes $4.7 million to further enhance and expand the program so that it could be applied in different crisis scenarios.
“The COVID-19 pandemic showed the importance of elevating U.S. supply chain resiliency in the national security conversation,” says America Makes Executive Director John Wilczynski. “The AMCPR program is advancing that conversation by creating a lasting framework to enhance our supply chains. The program ultimately will improve U.S. manufacturing coordination, responsiveness and competitiveness with the goal of preparing the U.S. for the next, unknown supply chain crisis. The successful scenario testing of the AMCPR Exchange portal is the proof of concept that the system works, and additive can be a go-to solution.”
The purpose of the scenario testing was to systematically assess AMCPR program processes and the AMCPR Exchange’s performance across several complex dimensions. The exercises consisted of seven hypothetical crisis scenarios and tested the end-to-end capabilities of the AMCPR Exchange including design generation, design review, supplier production and supplier distribution. A diverse set of America Makes Members and stakeholders participated in the tests and helped identify current strengths, capability expansion opportunities, and future enhancements to improve the portal. Each of the seven scenarios was successful in printing the requested parts and/or identifying critical path steps to take in future scenario testing. For more information on the tests, participants, and the results, check out the AMCPR Scenario Overview.
Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company’s website.