On January 27 & 28, the Department of Defense (DoD), through the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, launched two Centers of Excellence (COEs) at Tuskegee University and Howard University in defense research priority areas. The DoD Aerospace Education Research and Innovation Center (AERIC) awarded to Tuskegee University is devoted to promoting the expansion of the future aerospace technical workforce—particularly for underrepresented populations in the United States. Recognized as the home of the Tuskegee Airmen and the #1 producer of Black aerospace engineers in the nation, the AERIC will engage in basic and applied research relevant to the DoD and the aerospace industry. Research areas will focus on fatigue damage tolerance, experimental aerodynamics, and the performance of material and components under extreme environmental conditions. The AERIC is funded at $2 million per the FY 2018 congressional add sponsored by Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL), Chairman of the full Senate Appropriations Committee and the Subcommittee on Defense, and has a four-year period of performance.
The COE for Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (COE-AI/ML) awarded to Howard University concentrates on enabling and accelerating the development of key AI/ML applications to support the DoD’s modernization priorities. Consistent with Howard’s goal to increase the presence of underrepresented minorities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, the COE-AL/ML will further add diversification in the field of AI/ML. Howard University and collaborating partner, Old Dominion University, will lead research in thrust areas involving AI/ML applications, theory, and AI infrastructure. The COE-AI/ML is funded at $1.5 million per year with a five-year period of performance.
DoD HBCU/MSI Awards Press Release: https://www.cto.mil/investing-in-msi-scientific-research/
Howard University Press Release: https://newsroom.howard.edu/newsroom/article/13406/us-department-defense-awards-7