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US Department of Defense’s Extreme Cold Point of Need Manufacturing Challenge

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Conference Abstract: The US Department of Defense (DOD), along with its partners from Manufacturing USA and the Manufacturing Innovation Institutes (MIIs), held a first-of-its-kind "Point of Need Challenge Event" for solutions to support forward-deployed forces in austere environments. The Office of the Secretary of Defense Manufacturing Technology Program (OSD ManTech) sponsored the event. Advanced Manufacturing Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), Military Leaders, and Users planned and executed an Advanced Manufacturing Point of Need Demonstration for Extreme Cold Operations. The US Army led a multi-service team of Military Services (Army, Navy, AF, USMC), Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), Defense Innovation Unit, OSD ManTech, and Joint Staff to review, down select, plan, and execute the AdvM PoN Challenge Event. The event demonstrated technologies generated by member companies of the Department of Defense Manufacturing Innovation Institutes (MIIs). This presentation will discuss the initial concept development, selected scenarios, proposal call, pitch event, down-select, demonstration & exercise development, results, and key findings. The challenge event featured 11 pitch presentations that had been selected from 63 concept papers submitted by the MIIs and reviewed by 72 DoD reviewers. The pitches were reviewed by a panel of judges from across the DOD. The selected projects addressed 3 of the 7 challenge areas from the request covering the 10 Supply Classes, to include:(1) Build the FOB Challenge; (2) Unmanned Ground Vehicles (UGV) Challenge; (3) Warfighter Medical, Health, and Nutrition Challenge; (4) Power Challenge; (5) Cyber Challenges; (6) Staying in the Fight Challenge; and (7) Other – Technologies for austere forward operating base (FOB). Over $5M was invested for the live demonstrations conducted in “cold weather” austere environments. A summary of the winners, the selected technologies, and results of the assessment in “extreme cold” operating conditions will be discussed.
  • James Zunino
    SSTM - Senior Scientific Technical Manager Advanced Manufacturing & Future Concepts
    US Army DEVCOM