November 20, 2022. Bethesda, MD – The Applied Science & Technology Research Organization of America (ASTRO America) hosted a workshop in Guam this week, kicking off a “Additive Manufacturing (AM) Feasibility Study,” to determine the viability of a local industrial 3D printing industry. The workshop brought together representatives of business, research, higher education, utility/infrastructure, and economic development communities in Guam as well as key U.S. military stakeholders to ensure appropriate input.
In Guam, a remote Pacific island with great military significance, industrial 3D printing capabilities could be game-changer, overcoming logistical challenges and reducing requisition times for mission-essential parts by 90%. Moreover, 3D printing is becoming available to new industries, including potential concrete/building applications – this, as over $11 billion in new military and commercial construction, maintenance and service contracts are expected in Guam and the Indo-Pacific Region over the next 5 years. For this reason, ASTRO America has been commissioned to analyze the feasibility of establishing industrial 3D printing in Guam. The study was commissioned by the Guam Economic Development Authority (GEDA) at the direction of Governor Lou Leon Guerrero.
“The rise of China continues to focus US military and other investments on Guam and in the broader Indo-Pacific region. I believe Guam is well positioned to diversify our economy in a way that can leverage new technologies, attract investors and build up our workforce to support capabilities that would address the challenges of a rising China,” said Governor Lou Leon Guerrero. “This is an exciting time. We are proud to have the ASTRO America team onboard as partners in developing this capability.”
“When a part breaks down today, it can take several months if not years to requisition new spare parts – this is a significant issue for Defense users in Guam, a key staging area for U.S. forces” said Neal Orringer, ASTRO America’s President. “Understanding all of the unique complexities that exist, we believe solutions may lie on the island of Guam itself and that with AM, Guam can offer alternative opportunities to support key logistical supply lines.
“The AM blueprint would also change the island’s economic future forever,” Orringer continued. “ASTRO looks forward to delivering a comprehensive report and advancing this important effort.”
While in Guam, ASTRO America’s leadership team toured key facilities on the island and spoke with public and private stakeholders to gain additional insight. Another highlight of the trip, on Tuesday, November 15, ASTRO’s President Neal Orringer presented at the Guam Industry Forum, where he explained how 3D printing is revolutionizing manufacturing across the Defense industrial base and the potential it offers to Guam.
ASTRO’s work is currently in its first phase. More information on the Guam Accelerator Project can be found here.
About ASTRO America
The Applied Science and Technology Research Organization of America (ASTRO America) is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit, non-partisan Research Institute and Think Tank. It was established in 2018 to advance the public interest through manufacturing technology and policy. Led by manufacturing professionals with broad public and private sector experience, ASTRO America supports collaborations by government agencies and companies to address supply chain challenges in highly regulated industries, including aerospace and defense.
Find out more: https://www.astroa.org/