Advanced Manufacturing

Advanced Manufacturing generally comprises any technology that involves one or more of the following:

  • Nanotechnology, including materials, devices, or systems at the atomic, molecular, or macromolecular level, with a scale measured in nanometers
  • Microelectromechanical systems, including devices or systems integrating microelectronics with mechanical parts and a scale measured in micrometers
  • Improvements to vehicle safety, vehicle performance, vehicle production, or environmental impact, including, but not limited to, vehicle equipment and component parts
  • Any technology that involves an alternative energy vehicle or its components
  • Aerospace manufacturing


Wayne County is the home of the Motor City, and it should come as no surprise that Michigan is the #1 state for auto-related research and development, spending more than the other 49 states, Mexico, and Canada combined, much of it in Wayne County.

Our state remains the intellectual capital and global automotive R&D center, investing over $12.4 billion annually, employing more than 65,000 R&D professionals statewide and home to over 330 R&D facilities. It is #3 in the nation for engineering graduates, and boasts the 4th largest high tech workforce in the nation.

In 2007, Michigan was also ranked fourth in the nation in the field of small tech innovation – up from fifth the previous year. It is predicted that the world market for small tech products will reach $1.5 trillion in 2015.


Through the efforts of County Executive Ficano, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, and the leadership of various communities, Wayne County has been able to attract and/or retain the following advanced manufacturing companies in 2008 by offering assistance during the site selection process, examining all of the economic development entitlements that were available, and working with local units of government to fast track infrastructure improvements and expansions:

ArvinMeritor, Inc. 
Wayne, MI

A premier global supplier of a broad range of integrated systems, modules and components to the motor vehicle industry, ArvinMeritor invested $15.9 million in new equipment at its facility in southwest Detroit to fulfill a multi-year contract with a major automotive manufacturer

Aisin Technical Center 
Plymouth Twp., MI

Aisin Seiki, the sixth largest automotive supplier in the world, chose to expand its Plymouth Township technical center with a proposed $8.6-million project.

Danotek Motion Technologies 
Plymouth Twp., MI

The technology developer and manufacturer of Permanent Magnet Generators, Power Control Electronics, and Brushless Motors for power generation industries and advance automotive applications expanded its operations and relocated to Plymouth Township.

Ricardo, Inc. 
Van Buren Twp., MI

The Eco-Innovation Technology Company and a leading independent provider of technology, product innovation, engineering solutions and strategic consulting to the world’s automotive, transport and new energy industries invested $12.3 million to establish a rolling chassis dynamometer facility at its facility in Van Buren Township

Steel Tool & Engineering Co. 
Taylor, MI

The manufacturer and engineering provider of precision component parts for military and commercial aircraft jet engines invested $3.5 million to consolidate operations in Taylor and Wyandotte into a facility in Gibraltar.

 Other Resources

The Engineering Research Center for Wireless Integrated MicroSystems (WIMS) 

Established in 2000 by the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Michigan Technological University, the Ann Arbor-based center, funded in part by the National Science Foundation, is merging micropower circuits, wireless interfaces, biomedical and environmental sensors and subsystems, and advanced packaging to create microsystems that will permeate virtually every aspect of society during the next 20 years. In April 2008, the center dedicated an expansion of its $100 million “clean room” that makes it one of the best facilities in the country at a university for performing research on nanotechnology and solid-state devices

Great Lakes Trade Assistance Center 

The Great Lakes Trade Adjustment Assistance Center (GLTAAC) helps small manufacturers that have been negatively impacted by imports improve their competitiveness and long-term viability. The program has provided trade-injured manufacturers professional expertise and financial support needed to develop and implement recovery plans customized to meet each company’s individual needs. Support includes market research, sales plan development, lean manufacturing, quality certification, IT systems, and many other projects crucial to business success.

Michigan Aerospace Manufacturers Association 

The mission of the Michigan Aerospace Manufacturers Association (“MAMA”) is to serve and represent the interests of Michigan’s aerospace manufacturing firms with a single unified voice, to provide educational programs and industry research to its members and to promote the aerospace manufacturing community in the State of Michigan within the global industry.

Michigan Manufacturing & Technology Center 

Headquartered in Plymouth, MI, the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center (MMTC) provides Michigan’s small and medium sized manufacturers with operational assessment, process improvement training, mentoring services, website technical assistance and market diversification tactics. MMTC is the Michigan affiliate of federal Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership through the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

The Michigan Small Tech Association (MISTA)

An initiative formed by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation in 2002, MISTA was established to foster growth in micro- and nanotechnology. MISTA members represent a variety of Michigan companies, universities and organizations associated with this emerging sector. Through MISTA, companies can find a community dedicated to the effort to start and grow their small tech business.

Director of Economic Development Growth Engine (EDGE)