This piece was originally published in the May/June 2020 issue of electroindustry.
by Kirk Anderson, Industry Director, NEMA
NEMA is exploring cooperation with the Department of Defense (DOD) as agency procurement officials face mandates for supply chains of products containing critical materials.
As rare earth minerals have become increasingly important for advanced manufacturing and other high-performance and strategic applications, manufacturers and the federal government have concerns about the reliability of supply into the future. DOD is facing a prohibition on procurement of certain alloys and magnets containing rare earth elements as well as some forms of tungsten from specific countries. DOD has also found overreliance on sole foreign sources for unique and proprietary advanced materials and overreliance on China for strategic and critical materials.
NEMA staff and DOD procurement officials are discussing how NEMA and its Member companies could achieve compliance and help mitigate supply chain risk. NEMA is exploring ways to help the electroindustry understand the government requirements, help provide a path to identify products meeting the requirements, and encourage development of alternative sources for these critical and strategic materials.
If your company uses rare earth or other critical minerals or you are interested in learning more about this initiative, please contact Kirk Anderson, Director, NEMA Industrial Systems Division, at Kirk.Anderson@nema.org. ei