GRAND RAPIDS — Feyen Zylstra announced they have been chosen to establish an Innovation Center by the Clean Energy Smart Manufacturing Institute (CESMII). Funded by the U.S. Department of Energy, CESMII exists to rapidly accelerate the development and adoption of Smart Manufacturing principals to drive sustainable manufacturing efficiencies, improve energy consumption, and achieve real-time business improvements. Both focused on raising awareness around Smart Manufacturing and developing the next generation of workforce, CESMII and FZ make ideal partners.
CESMII is a network of networks, dedicated to driving Smart Manufacturing awareness, understanding, and adoption through the use of Smart Manufacturing Innovation Centers (SMIC). SMICs are standalone, innovative, value-driven centers that further CESMII’s mission in a hands-on and learning-centric way. With four SMICs currently founded across the nation, CESMII has chosen Grand Rapids-based Feyen Zylstra as the location for their newest SMIC. Feyen Zylstra’s SMIC will be known as the Innovation Center.
“Our team is thrilled about the opportunity our Innovation Center will offer to small to mid-sized manufacturers (SMM) located in the Midwest. With many SMMs being intimidated by the cost and scope of Smart Manufacturing and supporting technologies, it is our goal to educate how practical solutions and approaches can drive real, achievable results,” said Ryan Cahalane, President of Industrial Technology at Feyen Zylstra.
Slated to open in Spring 2022, FZ’s Innovation Center will welcome local manufacturers to learn, experience, and interact with Smart Manufacturing technology through experimental labs, interactive training workshops, and the showcasing of implementation success stories. The Innovation Center will specifically focus on making these principals accessible and understandable for all manufacturers, regardless of size, type of manufacturing, and the products they produce.
“FZ embodies an underrepresented part of the CESMII ecosystem – the Systems Integrator. Their experience serving multiple industries in factory automation, robotics, manufacturing information systems, and digital transformation consulting services, helps shape the tangible value that manufacturers can harness. They have the ability to guide customers through an often-confusing landscape of vendors while offering packaged solutions,” said John Dyck, Chief Executive Officer at CESMII. “Bringing Smart Manufacturing solutions to practice is about domain expertise and experience and value creation, but it’s also about contributing to the greater good, and advancing the state of the industry. We’re proud to partner with FZ in this important endeavor, shining the spotlight on these important capabilities.”
Ryan added, “FZ’s Innovation Center will be the only center in the CESMII network not located in a university setting. FZ’S project experience, methodologies, and daily interactions with manufacturers put us in a unique position to help SMMs address the labor challenge with innovative training workshops to upskill the manufacturing workforce. Beyond driving awareness for manufacturers, FZ is also able to provide guidance and services to help SMMs accelerate their ability to quickly implement more sustainable, resilient smart manufacturing solutions.”