Senator Chuck Schumer held a news conference at Eastman Business Park on February 21st to promote legislation he is advancing that will create 15 Institutes for Manufacturing Innovation across the US.
Schumer, along with University of Rochester president Joel Seligman and Rochester Institute of Technology president William Dessler, fervently asserted that one of those hubs needs be optics, photonics and imaging and ought to be in Rochester. The Nation Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI) institute’s would then help companies, especially manufacturers, with financing, grants, high-tech equipment, and trained workers. These hubs would be focused upon a particular industry that has a high potential for growth and new employment.
Schumer sees Rochester as a natural hub for advanced development of photonics and optics. “‘Photonics and optics is one of those new, cutting edge areas,’ he said before a phalanx of media, university and optics industry representatives while standing in Eastman Business Park’s Building 319, “and given the Rochester region’s academic expertise and business history in optics,’ Schumer said, ‘We have a real advantage.’”
Pomatech (precision optics manufacturing), a developing response to the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation, has been in the works since the naming of the first institute, in additive manufacturing last September.