Obama eyes tech boost with Pittsburgh visit

President Obama will announce new federal initiatives and new public-private partnerships designed to boost American manufacturing while visiting a technology center in Pittsburgh on Tuesday.

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The president's announcements will include $150 million in research funding for the Materials Genome Initiative, a public-private partnership that aims to halve the time it takes to develop materials for advanced manufacturing projects.

And the president will tout commitments from some 90 mayors and local leaders to opening access to advanced manufacturing and prototyping equipment in their cities for entrepreneurs. The White House hopes to usher in a new generation of innovators by allowing ordinary citizens access to high-tech research and development equipment.

"Inventors and tinkerers are experimenting not just with bits and bites but with nuts and bolts," Director of the National Economic Council Jeffrey Zients said.

The administration will also open up some $5 billion in research tools facilitated by the Department of Energy, NASA and National Institutes of Health to external entrepreneurs who want to test new manufacturing technologies. And the government will look to streamline the licensing of federal intellectual property to companies who will use that technology commercially.

Obama will make the announcement while visiting a Pittsburgh company called TechStop, where inventors can access high-tech manufacturing equipment to develop their ideas.

On Wednesday, the president is expected to announce new actions intended to boost entrepreneurship at a Maker Faire hosted at the White House.