Maryland set to get over $1 million for smart manufacturing in small and midsized businesses

21 June 2024- Governor Wes Moore today announced that the Maryland Department of Commerce has received a $1,010,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Manufacturing and Energy Supply Chains to accelerate the adoption of smart manufacturing technology in small and mid-sized businesses. The funding was granted as part of the larger State Manufacturing Leadership Program, a $50 million federal initiative that has issued awards to 12 state-run programs throughout the U.S. to date.

“Manufacturing is a critical part of Maryland’s economy. Continuing to encourage our business communities to invest in smart manufacturing technologies will help give our state the edge it needs to stay competitive in an evolving landscape,” said Gov. Moore. “We thank the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Manufacturing and Energy Supply Chains for its investment in our state.”  

Smart Manufacturing emphasizes the importance of new and evolving technologies within the manufacturing industry. Similar to Smart Manufacturing, Industry 4.0 represents the fourth industrial revolution, focusing on the digitization and automation of manufacturing facilities to help companies remain competitive and drive business growth. Investing in these integrated and collaborative manufacturing systems is expected to improve production, reduce costs, and increase overall efficiency within the manufacturing process, helping companies to remain competitive and drive additional growth.

The Washington County Department of Business and Economic Development has signaled its support of this initiative. They also emphasize that if you have any questions about the program and funding, reach out to Linda Spence, Business Specialist with the Department of Business and Economic Development at LSpence@WashCo-MD.net or by phone at 240-313-2286.

The department will use the funds in three different areas: technology readiness assessments for manufacturers, technical assistance for Industry 4.0 technology implementation, and general expansion of the existing Maryland Manufacturing 4.0 program. This additional support comes on the heels of the second round of Maryland Manufacturing 4.0 funding, in which 26 Maryland manufacturers received grants to help promote industry innovation. 

“We are pleased to receive additional funding for our Maryland Manufacturing 4.0 program, which has already helped dozens of businesses in the pursuit of technology modernization,” said Maryland Department of Commerce Secretary Kevin Anderson. “With extra backing from the U.S. Department of Energy, Maryland is sure to continue leading the way in Industry 4.0 and smart technologies.” 

The funding is expected to break down existing barriers by making smart manufacturing technologies and high-performance computing more accessible for use by small and mid-sized manufacturers. Advancing sustainable, next-generation tools and resources is key to achieving production efficiencies across the manufacturing sector by reducing costs, supporting new manufacturing opportunities, and reducing harmful emissions.