ASTRO America research team with Gov. Lourdes Leon Guerrero. Image courtesy of ASTRO America.
The Applied Science and Technology Research Organization (ASTRO) America has been awarded 550,000 USD by BlueForge Alliance to develop an additive manufacturing training centre in Guam.
BlueForge Alliance is a nonprofit program integrator for the US Navy’s Submarine Industrial Base (SIB) team.
It follows a feasibility study of the potential of additive manufacturing in Guam commissioned by the Government of Guam in 2021. ASTRO America was hired to conduct this study, the first phase of which was completed in April 2023. The second phase of the feasibility study is now also close to completion, with ASTRO America and the Guam Bureau of Statistics and Plans set to outline the vision for implementation of key aspects from the first phase.
The first phase of the feasibility study recommended three interrelated additive manufacturing facilities which would comprise a Research and Test Center, a Business Incubator, and an education and workforce training facility.
ASTRO America suggests that at least a couple of those objectives will be fulfilled and the organisation’s work to create an additive manufacturing ecosystem in Guam ‘continues to mature as planned.’ It is expected that the facility will likely place an emphasis on parts qualification for the US submarine program, which is BlueForge Alliance’s specialty, as well as prototyping.
“Guam has long served as a crucial base of operations for the US Navy,” commented Lourdes A. Leon Guerrero, the Governor of Guam. “Now, together, we can bring a technology revolution to Guam that will both create new job opportunities and contribute to America’s national security interests. I saw the potential that [AM] provides for Guam and commissioned a study to determine the feasibility of supporting [DoD] and commercial sector needs. Indeed, [AM] shows great promise for achieving our administration’s economic diversification goals, and I look forward to partnering with the Navy and this team to build a submarine industrial base here in Guam.”