PLM Center Overview


Purdue's Product Lifecycle Management Center of Excellence is an industry-funded, interdisciplinary research center. The Center fuses the talents and resources from the Purdue Polytechnic Institute, the Colleges of Engineering and Science, and the Krannert School of Management into a single focused entity to serve as a resource for industry. Through the high-TRL research, and the study of the integration and implementation sciences, the PLM Center draws on expertise from areas across the Purdue community to provide the Center's corporate partners with knowledge, techniques, and tools to help their bottom line.


The PLM Center was initially founded in 2002 as part of the larger Center for Advanced Manufacturing in Purdue’s Discovery Park. Over recent years, the PLM Center has acquired additional corporate members, and has received larger increments of funding through other sources, such as SME, NIST, and NSF, to extend its research and education programs. The Center has also played a key role in the new National Network for Manufacturing Innovation program that President Obama announced in 2011. The PLM Center, along with Rolls Royce and GE and other corporate and university partners, was a key member of the authoring team that developed the winning proposal to establish the Digital Manufacturing and Design Innovation Institute (DMDII) in Chicago, Illinois in 2013. Of the three research thrusts of the DMDII, the PLM Center is most closely aligned to the Advanced Manufacturing Enterprise at DMDII. The PLM Center is also collaborating with the IACMI and NextFlex NNMI centers.


In an effort to develop relevant materials and resources for the incumbent workforce, the PLM Center has also been instrumental in the creation of continuing education programs in the PLM space. It currently sponsors and administers two programs, one in PLM and the other in model-based definition (MBD), which have been taken by employees from companies such as Boeing, Caterpillar, Mitutoyo, Booz Allen Hamilton, and others. These programs provide instruction that bridges the gap between management’s strategy for PLM and software-specific training. As a result of developing and deploying these programs, the PLM Center has also funded and architected a PLM infrastructure that attempts to parallel industrial installations in its breadth off tools and hardware.

Mission Statement

The mission of Purdue University's Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) Center of Excellence is to promote the advancement and implementation of PLM through research and education in partnership with industry.


The objectives of the Purdue PLM Center of Excellence are:


  • Conducting research that promotes PLM as a methodology and practice
  • Establishing industry partnerships that guide, support, and validate PLM research and education activities
  • Promoting the evolution and use of model-based digital product data
  • Promoting the use and development of tools and practices that emphasize the concept of a “digital twin” for products
  • Promote the author/consumer communication model around the use of digital product data
  • Assisting with the integration of PLM into curriculum
  • Facilitating the pursuit of PLM career opportunities by Purdue graduates
  • Enabling PLM adoption by industry