RAMP MD Extends RDECOM C&B Center Partnership to 2023

CCDC Chemical Biological Center Public Affairs | July 27th, 2018

RAMP MD

On its fourth anniversary, the Regional Additive Manufacturing Partnership of Maryland (RAMP MD) extended its partnership with the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command Chemical & Biological (RDECOM C&B) Center. The two organizations agreed to a five-year extension through July 25, 2023.

On its fourth anniversary, the Regional Additive Manufacturing Partnership of Maryland (RAMP MD) extended its partnership with the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command Chemical & Biological (RDECOM C&B) Center. The two organizations agreed to a five-year extension through July 25, 2023.

RDECOM C&B Center Director Eric Moore, Ph.D. and RAMP MD Executive Director Rick Decker marked the occasion by signing an amendment to the existing cooperative research and development agreement during a signing ceremony at the Center’s additive manufacturing facility. This amendment will allow the Center to continue to be an important partner in the advancement of additive manufacturing capabilities within Maryland.

Through workforce training, facilities access, and infrastructure development, RAMP MD seeks to leverage public-private partnerships to help advance a burgeoning industry that the RDECOM C&B Center has been leading in for nearly three decades. With the equipment and knowledge in-house at the Center, government, private sector and education leaders saw an opportunity to work together to improve the industry and the economy.

“RAMP MD is an opportunity to push new, innovative technologies forward and to develop a sector of professional partners that we’ll have outreach to in the future,” said Moore. “By having commercial success, they will develop beyond our initial interactions.”

“We all get stronger from this,” Moore added. “The economy gets stronger. There are more

business partners in the region. We get the benefits of the workforce, the culture and the new technologies that spin out of this.”

With just 4 percent of the nation’s STEM workforce under 30, Moore said he also sees an opportunity to influence a younger generation of scientists, pointing to the developing apprenticeship program.

“This is going to refresh the workforce and give us an opportunity to maintain manufacturing-based professionals in the region,” Moore said.

The Center’s capabilities are also a boon for its partners.

“We’ve influenced the creation of over 250 jobs, and we’ve had joint work statements with over two dozen individual entrepreneurs and businesses,” said RAMP MD Executive Director Rick Decker, a former Center Director. “More importantly, we have continued the workforce development, both internally for the U.S. Army and externally to this ever-growing field.”

Decker pointed out that additive manufacturing was an $8 billion industry last year in the U.S. In five years, it’s projected to be a $27 billion.

“It’s one of the fastest growing engineering, science and manufacturing technologies in the world,” Decker said.

In attendance were a handful of state officials, including state representatives from the region.

“Having our legislators be aware of all the possibilities, our vision and the challenges, it gives us an opportunity to work together in Annapolis,” Moore said.

State Sen. J.B. Jennings, who serves as the senate’s minority leader, says he sees the potential for more help coming from Annapolis to help RAMP MD.

“We’ve come up with some ideas for legislation before, and now that this is a clear success, it’s something we can come back and look at,” Jennings said. “At first, this was just a concept, wondering if it would work. Well, it has worked, and as we move forward we’ll talk to the RAMP MD board members about what they need to take this to the next level.”

David McGlone, deputy secretary of Labor, Licensing and Regulation, said his office can help with training and the apprenticeship program.

“With the workforce development and the apprenticeship program, that’s where we want to help,” he said. “We want to see this grow. We’re excited about the opportunity for people to learn and earn at the same time. We’re giving as much support as we can.


The U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Chemical Biological Center (CCDC Chemical Biological Center) is the Army’s principal research and development center for chemical and biological defense technology, engineering and field operations. The Center has achieved major technological advances for the warfighter and for our national defense, with a long and distinguished history of providing the armed forces with quality systems and outstanding customer service. The CCDC Chemical Biological Center is located at the Edgewood Area of Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland.