Autodesk, Siemens and the Obama Administration Work to Innovate Manufacturing

New “Digital Lab for Manufacturing” looks to invigorate US production.

UI LABS, Autodesk, Siemens, the Obama Administration and a consortium of other organizations have announced a new Digital Lab for Manufacturing (DLM) in Chicago, Illinois. Its aim is to jumpstart the US manufacturing sector through collaboration, technology, resources and research.

As part of President’s Obama’s National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI) vision, his administration offered UI LABS, who run the DLM, a grant of $70 million. The project has garnered an additional $250 million of support from a consortium of stakeholders within the community, government, universities and industry. It is expected this investment will generate thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in revenue for industry and the US Department of Defense (DOD).

According to Warren Holtsberg, Chairman of UI LABS, “This is a transformative opportunity to shape the future of American Manufacturing … We salute the vision of the President and the confidence the Department of Defense placed in UI LABS to be that change agent.”

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn also commented on the DLM, “Illinois is at the forefront of a high-tech manufacturing revolution and that means our state will be Ground Zero for creating the high-tech jobs of the future … This first-of-its-kind digital hub will make companies more competitive and stronger by providing them with the most cutting edge tools and technologies. It will be the birthplace for innovations that will change the world in which we live, work and play.”

Siemens and Autodesk will be supplying software to aid in the research. To that point Buzz Kross, Autodesk Sr. VP of Design, Lifecycle and Simulation, said, “It is a great honor to have the opportunity to collaborate with the U.S. Government and UI Labs on the new Digital Lab for Manufacturing … We are at a crucial stage in the rebirth of American manufacturing, and the Autodesk team is passionate about providing education, training and technological support that will serve as a catalyst for industrial innovation here at home.”

Siemens PLM Software CEO, Chuck Grindstaff, adds, “Siemens is proud to be both a technology partner and investor in the Digital Lab which is designed to drive innovation and America’s manufacturing resurgence … Siemens software is delivering enhanced productivity, increased efficiency, a quicker time to market and more flexibility. As the sole PLM supplier serving as a Tier One partner, Siemens will provide ongoing strategic leadership and manpower to help bring both the potential and the vision of the Digital Lab to fruition.”

Some other organizations in the consortium include GE, P&G and Lockheed Martin.

UI Labs is a collaborative research and commercialization organization in the Chicago area. Their goal is to bridge the work of government, industry and universities in an effort to solve the economic, cultural and business problems of tomorrow. Judging by this announcement, they seem to be doing their job.

Source Autodesk, Siemens and UI Labs

Written by

Shawn Wasserman

For over 10 years, Shawn Wasserman has informed, inspired and engaged the engineering community through online content. As a senior writer at WTWH media, he produces branded content to help engineers streamline their operations via new tools, technologies and software. While a senior editor at, Shawn wrote stories about CAE, simulation, PLM, CAD, IoT, AI and more. During his time as the blog manager at Ansys, Shawn produced content featuring stories, tips, tricks and interesting use cases for CAE technologies. Shawn holds a master’s degree in Bioengineering from the University of Guelph and an undergraduate degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Waterloo.