Lockheed Martin Ventures has invested $21.8 million in Machina Labs, a manufacturing company that uses AI and robotics to produce sheet metal products.
Bethesda, Md.-based Lockheed Martin, which develops defense technologies, said it invested in Machina Labs through its venture division to bring “their advanced and agile manufacturing platform to our customers.”
“We aim to operationalize and scale solutions with speed and effectiveness so the U.S. and our allies can stay ahead of emerging threats,” said Chris Moran, vice president and general manager of Lockheed Martin Ventures.
Machina Labs smiths factory of the future
Machina Labs said it has developed a patented manufacturing platform that allows customers to produce finished metal products in a matter of days.
“Machina Labs uses robots the way a blacksmith uses a hammer creatively to manufacture different designs and material, introducing unseen flexibility and agility to the manufacturing industry,” the Los Angeles-based company stated.
Founded in 2019, Machina Labs said its mission is to “develop modular manufacturing solutions that can be reconfigured to manufacture new products simply by changing the software.” The company announced $16.3 million in Series A funding in November 2021.
“At Machina Labs, we are creating the factory of the future; one where a variety of designs and physical products can be produced on-demand and at scale,” according to Edward Mehr, co-founder and CEO of Machina Labs.
“With Lockheed Martin’s investment, we can accelerate development of our sheet metal Roboforming to better serve the need of the defense sector and give the United States a competitive advantage in speed of development for national security and defense products,” he said.
Lockheed Martin continues interest in robotics
Lockheed Martin Ventures has been investing in robotics companies for years. As part of its $200 million evergreen funds, it has given money to over 35 companies over its 16-year history, according to its website.
Last week, LCI, the aviation subsidiary of Libra Group, announced that it was ordering 40 of Elroy Air’s VTOL aircrafts. Lockheed Martin Ventures was among the firms to invest in Elroy Air’s $40 million Series A funding round in August 2021.
Lockheed Martin is also a member organization of the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing (ARM) Institute in Pittsburgh.