Hopkins materials institute to support U.S. manufacturing innovation initiative

The Hopkins Extreme Materials Institute—HEMI, for short—has been selected to provide key expertise related to blasts and ballistics for a new one of two new manufacturing innovation institutes led by the Department of Defense.

HEMI will support the Detroit-based Lightweight and Modern Metals Manufacturing Innovation Institute, or LM3I, which pairs the world's leading aluminum, titanium, and high-strength steel manufacturers with universities and laboratories pioneering new technology development and research. The long-term goal of the LM3I Institute will be to expand the market for and create new consumers of products and systems that utilize new, lightweight, high‑performing metals and alloys by removing technological barriers to their manufacture.

LM3I, along with the Chicago-based Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation, or DMDI, will be supported by a $140 million federal commitment combined with more than $140 million in non-federal resources. President Barack Obama announced the new institutes last month, noting that they are aimed at boosting advanced manufacturing, strengthening U.S. defense capabilities, and attracting the types of high-quality jobs required by a growing middle class.

HEMI's faculty experts in materials science and mechanical engineering are expected to contribute significant research in the basic science—down to the atomic level—of what happens to metals subjected to an extreme impact. HEMI experts will work with a consortium of 60 businesses and universities led by the University of Michigan and the Edison Welding Institute.