President Barack Obama’s $1 billion commitment to make American manufacturing more competitive took another step forward Friday when Carnegie Mellon University and the U.S. Department of Defense announced plans for a $253 million robotics research initiative based in Pittsburgh.

The center — funded by 220 government, industry and academic sources — is the latest of 14 manufacturing institutes that are researching technologies like 3-D printing medical implants that will help broken bones heal faster; working on new, streamlined ways of manufacturing lightweight metals; and developing breakthrough fabrics capable of storing energy and monitoring the health of the person who wears them.

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