Tag Archives: technology transfer

In Wisconsin, cold-spray knowledge is a hot commodity

Posted on 27. Sep, 2013 by .

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Back in the mid-1980s, Fisher Barton founder Richard Wilkey (BSMetE ’59) was looking for coatings to extend the life of the lawnmower blades his Wisconsin-based company manufactured. For help, he looked to Frank Worzala, then a professor of metallurgical and mineral engineering, and Worzala’s master’s student Bill Lenling (BSMetE ‘84, MSMetE ‘86), who was seeking [...]

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For building owners, IPD is A-OK

Posted on 27. Sep, 2013 by .

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In America,” says Tom Boldt, “we revel in low price.” It’s true, particularly in tough economic times. We’re a nation of cost- and value-conscious consumers seeking to get the biggest bang for our buck. However, in many situations, the lowest price doesn’t automatically guarantee a high-quality product or a high level of customer satisfaction. Take, [...]

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Innovation lifts limits of landfill liners

Posted on 27. Sep, 2013 by .

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Generally made from bentonite clay sandwiched between textile or membrane layers, geosynthetic clay liners are the “gold standard” for preventing industrial, hazardous and municipal solid wastes from seeping into the environment. Such liners are particularly effective barriers, because as the clay absorbs water, it swells and the pore spaces between its particles shrink. Yet, even [...]

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Quicker, quake-proof skyscrapers

Posted on 27. Sep, 2013 by .

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Peel back the outer layers of a skyscraper built in an area vulnerable to earthquakes and you’ll find a tangle of steel-reinforced concrete beams that span doors, windows and other openings in the structure’s many supporting walls. Those coupling beams play a critical role in helping a skyscraper withstand the effects of an earthquake. Yet, [...]

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Silicon Valley Badger Engineers: How the West was won

Posted on 02. May, 2013 by .

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Here’s a story that could aptly be titled, “Only in Silicon Valley.” Three young entrepreneurs come to Inspovation—a Los Altos, California, venture firm—with a cool idea to create a cheaper alternative to renting cars at airports. The team has an impressive lineage from Harvard, MIT and Princeton. As the conversation continues, the investors find the [...]

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Video tool could help active workers avoid injury

Posted on 01. May, 2013 by .

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Video of workers performing tasks such as assembling a manufactured part or packing boxes could help assess the likelihood that those people will develop common repetitive-motion injuries. Repeatedly performing the same motions and exertions can lead to injuries in which the body suffers strain from even tiny actions—for example, handling small parts, operating a machine [...]

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Innovation: Forward thinking

Posted on 27. Aug, 2012 by .

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The University of Wisconsin-Madison will formally recognize 2012-13 as the Year of Innovation. As the engineering dean at a major research university, I recognize the importance of innovation in moving research discoveries into society to improve our quality of life and the economy. Innovation is where great ideas and discoveries are put to work for [...]

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Insights on innovation

Posted on 27. Aug, 2012 by .

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UW-Madison is recognizing 2012-13 as the Year of Innovation, offering a chance to reflect on what this concept means to the university and to society. With $136 million in research and more than 100 patent disclosures annually, the College of Engineering has worked to cultivate innovation as standard operating procedure in our classrooms and labs. [...]

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Creative energy: In new building, microgrid lab will spark practical solutions

Posted on 20. Apr, 2012 by .

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When the Wisconsin Energy Institute building opens on the UW-Madison campus in early 2013, it will include a high-power microgrid that will combine real and simulated power sources capable of reproducing the inherent technical challenges associated with intermittent energy sources. “We want to be able to create all of the different operating conditions that are [...]

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Who knew? Five questions with Bill Murphy about biotech innovation

Posted on 19. Apr, 2012 by .

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Bill Murphy is an associate professor of biomedical engineering, materials science and engineering, and orthopedics and rehabilitation. Murphy and his students develop new biomaterials and uses for biomaterials, as well as new approaches for drug delivery and gene therapy. He and various collaborators have founded two spin-off companies, collaborated with several other established companies, and [...]

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Freight consortium picks up speed

Posted on 19. Apr, 2012 by .

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The U.S. Department of Transportation awarded a $3.5 million grant to the National Center for Freight and Infrastructure Research and Education (CFIRE). Led by researchers at UW-Madison, CFIRE is a partnership among 10 U.S. universities and encompasses a geographical area that serves the majority of freight traffic in the United States. The new grant will [...]

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Retaining quality faculty

Posted on 09. Dec, 2011 by .

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Collective giving effort keeps star prof on board The offer was expansive: a chance to join the leadership of a new center for environmental technology in a brand-new building and a brand-new lab, collaboration with one of the leaders in the field of environmental engineering, and a chance to work in a state—Arizona—with huge support [...]

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Nine to five in two

Posted on 09. Dec, 2011 by .

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Funded research project lands grad student a full-time job Many College of Engineering students complete internships during their tenure at the college, hoping to gain work experience that will make them better equipped to find jobs in their fields. But, sometimes the benefits are more direct. Take Anshuman Sharma, a materials science graduate student who [...]

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Casting a nano future for the metals industry

Posted on 06. Oct, 2011 by .

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Aluminum and magnesium alloys hold great potential for manufacturers, as these alloys are much lighter than traditional high-strength materials such as iron and steel. However, most high-strength aluminum and magnesium alloys are difficult to cast because these materials tend to crack as they solidify in casting molds. This “hot tearing” is a major barrier to [...]

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Strengthening bonds with the welding industry

Posted on 06. Oct, 2011 by .

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An engine block cast from aluminum or magnesium-matrix nanocomposites can be much lighter than one cast from aluminum alone. Similarly, a power-plant pressure vessel made from advanced steel that can withstand higher temperature and pressure without deforming could burn more efficiently and produce less pollution. Researchers continue to create new materials with properties that promise [...]

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From patent to proven product: A new approach to tech transfer

Posted on 04. Oct, 2011 by .

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On paper, it’s listed as U.S. Patent No. 7,615,593: “A faster and more effective way to treat chronic wounds through the use of a liquid cellular matrix, rather than conventional bandages.” But in practice, the patent is the subject of an exciting shift in thinking at UW-Madison about how to move medical technology from patent [...]

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Expanding the potential of MRI for diagnosing breast cancer

Posted on 04. Oct, 2011 by .

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In the world of medical imaging, no single technology provides all the answers for the critical procedure of breast cancer biopsy. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), for example, produces clear, highly revealing images of potential breast cancer lesions, but lacks practicality in obtaining a biopsy sample. Ultrasound imaging, on the other hand, is less revealing than [...]

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With second company, laser researchers are seeing new light

Posted on 04. Oct, 2011 by .

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Two professors have formed a startup company to commercialize a nanoscale laser structure that could benefit a wide range of industries. Intraband LLC was co-founded in 2008 by Philip Dunham Reed Professor Dan Botez and Professor Luke Mawst and has received recent funding from the U.S. Army and Navy Small Business Technology Transfer Programs. Botez [...]

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New ‘wave’ of energy research

Posted on 04. Oct, 2011 by .

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A renewable energy source that could serve the majority of the U.S. population often flows by unnoticed, even as it continuously rolls and crashes onto the shores of a country searching for petroleum alternatives. Electrical and Computer Engineering PhD student Jennifer Vining has brought the attention of Wisconsin Electric Machines & Power Electronics Consortium researchers [...]

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Friction stir welding fuses engineering research and Wisconsin industry

Posted on 22. Jun, 2011 by .

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Economic impact: 10 naval ships 10 years 5,000 jobs American naval ships usually conjure images of aircraft carriers or other large vessels far out to sea. The USS Freedom (LCS 1), however, is able to enter water as shallow as 14 feet, giving sailors unprecedented access to regions where the U.S. military is present, such [...]

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Mentor for innovators

Posted on 01. Sep, 2010 by .

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Erwin W. Mueller Professor and Bascom Materials Science and Engineering Professor of Surface Science Max Lagally serves as a bridgebetween the UW-Madison laboratories where cutting-edge technologies are developed and the companies taking those devices to market. “When I was in graduate school during the Sputnik era, the motivation in academia was to create more academics,” [...]

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Salt of the earth

Posted on 01. Sep, 2010 by .

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Extracting oil, with heat With a material as simple as salt, engineering physics scientists and students are testing ways to store and transport heat for applications as diverse as storing solar energy and extracting oil. Their expertise is useful for oil companies such as Shell, which someday could use the powerful heat-transferring properties of molten [...]

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Kings of the road

Posted on 01. Sep, 2010 by .

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With gleaming stainless-steel equipment, Civil and Environmental Engineering Professor Hussain Bahia’s third-floor Engineering Hall laboratory feels much like a high-tech kitchen. There, he and his students meticulously develop and test “recipes” for asphalt mixes that can help contractors make the most of their material. Among their ingredients are polymer additives developed by Honeywell Specialty Additives [...]

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