The investment will help augment the global competitiveness of the U.S. manufacturing sector. The U.S. Secretary of Energy, Rick Perry has recently announced an investment of about $89 million to support advanced manufacturing R&D (research and development) projects in the country’s manufacturing sector. The move follows Mr. Perry’s March 2019 announcement of welcoming proposals to address cybersecurity for energy-efficient manufacturing. According to trusted sources, this U.S. Department of Energy FOA (Funding Opportunity Announcement) will tackle key departmental priorities such as local manufacturing for energy storage and will request proposals in three areas to improve the global competitiveness of the U.S. by means of catalyzing advancements around manufacturing of energy technologies. The three areas would include; undertaking innovations by employing machine learning technologies for manufacturing advanced material; focusing on research of industrial process drying technologies to increase product quality; and seeking application of more efficient power conversion equipment and opportunities for transforming process energy to electrical energy and later integrating it with the grid. Sources add that the initiative will further be headed by DoE Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy’s AMO (Advanced Manufacturing Office). The department anticipates making up to 55 awards in about three years and attain a cost-share of at least 20% for R&D projects. Speaking on the investment, Mr. Perry said that embracing novel technologies that drive innovation in the U.S manufacturing sector is vital to creating real-world progress that significantly enhances energy efficiency in manufacturing. He claims that the department, by concentrating on energy-related manufacturing technologies, is building a new era of manufacturing that will supplement the economy, generate jobs and build energy independence in the U.S. For the record, producers in the U.S. manufacturing sector have created about 500,000 jobs since 2017 and over 250,000 jobs in 2018 alone. Additionally, the sector uses 25% of the nation’s energy. Source credit: