Of the 50 projects awarded funding in the last round of the Technology Innovation program (TIP), offered through U.S. Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), three of them went to Ohio companies. This article provides information about recent winners and a company that is applying to the next round of NIST TIP funding.
The three Ohio TIP winners which were announced in December for the 2009 program were MesoCoat Inc. of Euclid, OH (along with partners EMTEC and Polythermics), Angstron Materials, LLC of Dayton and Hyper Tech Research, Inc. of Columbus. The Mesocoat project was “Advanced Coating Technology for Infrastructure.” The Angstron Materials project was “Functionalized Nano Graphene for Next-Generation Nano-Enhanced Products.” The Hyper Tech Research project was “High-Speed, Continuous Manufacturing of Nano-doped Magnesium Diboride Superconductors for Next-generation MRI Systems.”
Among the Ohio winners, Hyper Tech had received Ohio Department of Development (ODOD) Third Frontier (OTF) program funds in 2009 as a Research and Commercialization Program awardee. Programs such as NIST TIP are a logical next-step for companies that have won OTF funds and are ready to seek Federal grant monies. “Noteworthy is the fact that Hyper Tech has established a partnership with the Welding Engineering Program in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at The Ohio State University,” said Glenn S. Daehn, Director of The Ohio Manufacturing Institute (OMI) and Professor in the College of Engineering at Ohio State, (Yvonne, something missing here) said that OMI also provided introductions that led to the partnership between Professor Dave F. Farson in Welding Engineering and Hyper Tech.
NIST recently closed its submission period on its latest round of TIP proposals on “Manufacturing and Biomanufacturing: Materials Advances and Critical Processes.” With the approximately $25 million available for first-year funding, NIST expects to award 25 new projects to inspire revolutionary materials advances leading to new products with advanced features that will enter the market more quickly.
The present round of NIST TIP funding, which will likely be addressed by several proposals from Ohio companies, focused on three areas that are very strong in Ohio’s high-tech development focus:
1. Process scale-up, integration and design for materials advances—addressing how new materials are moved from the laboratory to full production;
2. Predictive modeling for materials advances and materials processing—using the power of modern analysis, modeling and computation to streamline the design and production scale-up of new materials by more accurately predicting their performance; and
3. Critical process advances—novel production technologies that dramatically improve the processing of new materials or resolve important bottlenecks and inefficiencies in the production of existing materials.
One example of a program being proposed to the NIST TIP program in the 2010 funding comes from American Trim LLC, headquartered in Lima, OH. American Trim proposes a novel and groundbreaking approach to metal forming using two new tooling approaches: bulk metallic glass (BMG) and the replacement of traditional large-format manufacturing presses with smaller and more agile electromagnetic forming systems. Both these technologies have intrinsic merit and there are substantial synergies that come from combining them. The research proposed by American Trim will address three forming length scales, separately and in combination: macro-forming, micro-forming, and nano-forming, using the proposed revolutionary concept of master/daughter BMG dies and molds. In all three scales of forming, the tool and die have great effect on the cost, quality, and process of manufacturing. The successful completion of the work proposed by American Trim will begin nothing short of re-writing the rules in die and mold-making, die materials, and metal-working procedures. These new rules, based on new technology held in the US, along with advanced modeling and simulation, will form the nucleus of a new Industrial Commons, where the US will re-establish its leadership role in next-generation tool and die technology.
Steve Hatkevich, R&D director of American Trim, said, “The research and development activities in electromagnetic forming at American Trim stem from nearly a decade of collaboration between AmTrim and the research group at OSU. With the support of this collaboration and tech transfer to industry, we have developed a vibrant and world-class R&D group in this area; I am very happy to see us commercializing our research work. Also, if the BMG die making is successful, OMI will disseminate this technology to other companies.”
Awards are expected to be announced by NIST TIP later in 2010.
The NIST Technology Innovation Program (TIP) supports, promotes, and accelerates innovation in the United States through high-risk, high-reward research in areas of critical national need. TIP has the agility and flexibility to make targeted investments in transformational R&D that will ensure our nation’s future through sustained technological leadership.
Working with its partners across business, state and local governments, academia, and the non-profit sector, the Ohio Department of Development works to attract, create, grow, and retain businesses through competitive incentives and targeted investments. Engaged every day in marketing, innovating, investing, and collaborating, the Ohio Department of Development works at the speed of business to accelerate and support the teamwork that is absolutely necessary for success by providing financial, informational, and technical assistance to those making an investment in Ohio’s future.
The Center for Multifunctional Polymer Nanomaterials and Devices (CMPND) leads a research and commercialization partnership in polymer nanotechnology. This multi-institutional, interdisciplinary organization is centered at The Ohio State University in conjunction with research university partners, University of Akron, University of Dayton, University of Toledo, Kent State University, and Wright State University. CMPND puts Ohio at the forefront of nanotechnology research and commercialization opportunities. Other partners include three additional Ohio universities, and more than 60 large and small companies in Ohio. CMPND helps target markets that build on the research strengths of the participating universities and national labs, and develops manufacturing protocols and nanostructures for near-term industrial polymeric nanocomposites, emerging polymer photonic components and devices, and more futuristic biomedical devices and systems with nanoscale functions.
PolymerOhio, Inc. is a polymer industry-specific Ohio Edison Technology Center, which is funded by the Ohio Department of Development. PolymerOhio focuses on enhancing the global competitiveness of the polymer industry, including companies from the plastics, rubber, bioproducts, and advanced materials segments. For more information, polymerohio.org
American Trim was founded in 1951 and specializes in the forming, decorating, and coating of metal and composite substrates. These core competencies are supported and enhanced by American Trim’s design, research and development activities ensuring the most cost effective solutions for its customer partners.