Additive manufacturing (AM) or 3D printing is a disruptive technology which allows the Warfighter to perform expeditionary repair and mitigate down time caused by battle damage and depleted supply. An overall enterprise-wide view sees using AM at different levels of support to provide readiness, modernize systems and mitigate treats through advanced technology development. Operationalizing AM is an Army priority in order to provide “increased readiness” through manufacturing and/or repairing components in the field and “enhanced Warfighter capabilities” quickly. Operationalizing will require a strategy to utilize the organic industrial base (OIB) through the Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence at Rock Island Arsenal (AM CoE), engineering support activities (ESA) and expeditionary systems working in unison to be a force multiplier for the Warfighter. The overall strategy begins by identifying the opportunity spaces where AM can positively impact Army systems, develop and execute a campaign plan to achieve those positive results, develop a unified ecosystem of OIB and expeditionary AM locations, gather point of need data and use that data to refine the capability requirements. Finally develop materiel solutions for the Warfighter and the OIB to produce the components to increase readiness.
- Understand the US Army’s overall vision for operationalizing additive manufacturing
- Understand the roles of the organic industrial base and expeditionary point-of-need use cases
- Understand the future concepts of how additive manufacturing may be employed