Metals Processing and Fabrication Subpanel

The mission of the Metals Processing and Fabrication ("Metals") Subpanel is to identify and integrate requirements for metals manufacturing across the Army, Navy, Air Force, Defense Logistics Agency, Missile Defense Agency, Office of Secretary of Defense, Department of Energy, industry, and academia.  The Metals Subpanel identifies common needs, fosters joint project planning, and conducts annual portfolio reviews to coordinate all Department of Defense Manufacturing Technology (DoD ManTech) Program metals projects to eliminate unwarranted duplication and identify common requirements.

The Subpanel discusses and remains cognizant of state of the art metals technology developments that can advance DoD capabilities and supports manufacturing technology advancement beyond the normal risk tolerance of industry.  This Subpanel focuses on bridging the gap between technologies at Manufacturing Readiness Level (MRL) 4 to 7/8 and identifies manufacturing technology that is applicable to more than one weapon system.  The Metals Subpanel contributes to the overall goal of the Joint Defense Manufacturing Technology Panel (JDMTP) and the DoD ManTech Program to improve mission capability, improve readiness, and reduce total ownership costs.

The Metals Subpanel includes manufacturing technology for metals, ceramics, metal matrix composites, ceramic matrix composites, and other materials of similar microstructure.  Inclusion of materials within the Metals Subpanel portfolio is driven both by the materials themselves and by the processes used to produce them and includes a range of classifications including: nano-materials, meta-materials, meso-materials, and functionally gradient materials.  Processes associated with metals fabrication include: machining, casting, forging, joining, powder metallurgy, heat treatment, fabrication, surface conditioning, treatments, etc.

Other associated technologies within the scope of the Subpanel include:

  • Nondestructive testing and evaluation,
  • Computational modeling and simulation of materials, materials processes, and machining processes,
  • Nontraditional additive manufacturing processing such as:
    • Laser additive manufacturing 
    • Solid State additive manufacturing
    • Electron beam and plasma additive manufacturing

The scope includes manufacturing technology efforts in support of both new production and sustainment/readiness activities for fielded systems to include repair activities from the field level to depot level.


The diagram below is a top down decomposition of the technical areas of investment for the Metals Subpanel.

Metals Taxonomy


Joint Technology Pursuit Areas

Joint Technology Pursuit Areas (JTPAs) are joint Military Service and DoD Agency manufacturing research and development (R&D) topics of strategic interest that are developed by each JDMTP Subpanel.  The Subpanels provide a rigorous internal analysis and prioritization of the JDMTP portfolio.  To date, JTPAs continue to be an excellent tool to communicate joint technical priorities to the Office of the Secretary of Defense Manufacturing Technology Office leadership and the collective DoD ManTech stakeholder community.  These JTPAs identify joint-Service investment opportunities predicted to produce the highest value, affordable, leading edge defense capabilities to meet the near term needs of our warfighters.

Metals Joint Technology Pursuit areas include:

  • American manufacturing
  • Comprehensive inspection strategy for future manufacturing technologies
  • Portable friction stir welding and other solid state joining techniques
  • Tailorable materials

Subpanel Chair

The Metals Subpanel chair is a nominated position that rotates among the Services and agencies that comprise the JDMTP.  The current chair of the Metals Subpanel is Rob Wittman from Wright Patterson Air Force Base. 

Primary organizations involved in the subpanel are from the Army Research Lab, Army Armaments Center, Navy Research Lab, Air Force Research Lab, Missile Defense Agency, Defense Logistics Agency, Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Steel Founders of America, Edison Welding Institute, Die Casters Association and American Foundry Society, industry, and academia.

Schedule of Meetings

The Metals Subpanel meetings are held six times a year at national locations where projects are being executed.