A decades-long Air Force Research Laboratory initiative to ensure the nation retains manufacturing critical to national security has been ordered to move from Wright-Patterson Air Force Base to the Pentagon later this year, officials say.

U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, has urged the highest-ranking Pentagon civilian leader to reverse the decision. He and three of his congressional colleagues sent an Aug. 3 letter to Secretary of Defense James Mattis, warning the move could lead to “disorganized and haphazard development” of future programs and puts at risk dozens of active projects.