2008 Northeast Regional Award Winners Honored

The Northeast Region recently presented its annual awards honoring outstanding technology transfer achievements. The award winners were recognized at a ceremony during a Northeast regional meeting at Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York. This year's winners include the following.

From left: Dr. Theresa Baus, Regional Coordinator; Dr. Adrian Rusu and Dr. Jay Harper of Rowan University; and Deborah Germak of the William J. Hughes Technical Center

Rowan University
Industry/Non-federal Government/University Award

Rowan University, located in Glassboro, New Jersey, received the award for its outstanding efforts to promote the actual transfer of federal technology transfer in the Northeast Region. The university entered into a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to develop and improve graphical user interfaces (GUI) for the display of predicted and recorded air traffic data, as well as a visualization framework. The FAA/Rowan partnership was established with the primary goal of increasing Rowan students' exposure to real-world projects in software engineering and other upper-level computer sciences courses, while allowing the FAA to receive quality professional software products and research expertise.

The partnership enabled Rowan to establish the FAA/Rowan Air Transportation Research Laboratory, where the GUI software was perfected. Since the CRADA's inception, 17 undergraduate students have participated on projects in the Laboratory. The students have been honored by the Director of the FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center, located at Atlantic City International Airport, New Jersey, and have presented their work at the Rowan Science, Technology, Education and Mathematics Student Research Symposium. In addition, the experience the students gained through their participation in the partnership has helped many of them secure jobs in the aviation industry.

From left: Dr. Theresa Baus, Regional Coordinator; Lewis Meixler, Deputy Coordinator; and Dorry Tooker, Regional Award Committee Chair

Lewis Meixler, Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
Regional Coordinator's Excellence Award

Lewis Meixler of the New Jersey-based Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) received the Regional Coordinator's Excellence Award in recognition of his significant contributions to the FLC program. Since 1991, Meixler has been the Head of Technology Transfer and Applications Research/ORTA at PPPL. In addition, Meixler has been an active member of the Northeast Region and has served as Deputy Regional Coordinator since 2005.

Meixler has contributed greatly to the Northeast Region's outreach and technology transfer activities. AsPPPL ORTA, he has championed partnering with small businesses to provide access to PPPL facilities and expertise to enable small businesses to contribute essential research and development that affects the quality of life. Under a CRADA he initiated, Ras Labs of Hillsborough, New Jersey, is developing a method to produce synthetic muscle tissue that would allow amputees and other injured people to regain lost control of limbs, hands and fingers through the use of the synthetic muscle tissue and prosthetic devices (you can read more about this partnership in the Spring 2007 issue of FLC Northeast News).

Dr. Theresa Baus, Regional Coordinator and Jesse Erlich

Jesse Erlich, Burns & Levinson, LLP
Regional Appreciation Award

Jesse Erlich received the Regional Appreciation Award, which is presented to a non-government employee who has made a significant contribution to the federal technology transfer program. A partner at the Boston-based law firm of Burns and Levinson, LLP, Erlich is also a member of the Intellectual Property (IP)/SciTech, Government Contracts, and Science & Technology Groups. He represents a wide array of clients such as universities and technology companies of all sizes in diverse technological fields. Erlich has contributed to both the Northeast Region and the national FLC over many years. He is a valued advisor on issues regarding intellectual property, government contracts, SBIR programs and homeland security, and has shared his expertise at numerous training sessions at FLC regional and national meetings. In addition, Erlich has helped the FLC's Washington, D.C. office deal with IP-related legislation.

Erlich has contributed to numerous publications and has co-authored a book entitled Technology Development and Transfer—The Transaction and Legal Environment. He is also a contributor to the Aspen Law & Business 2000-2008 Licensing Update. A member of the faculty of Franklin Pierce Law School, Erlich has also sat on the faculty of the National Intellectual Property Law Institute and the Intellectual Property Institute for Corporate Counsel.

From left: Dr. Theresa Baus, Regional Coordinator; and Timothy Ryan and Robert Braun of US Army ARDEC

U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center
Regional Laboratory Award

The U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) at Picatinny Arsenal, New Jersey, received the Regional Laboratory Award for its extraordinary efforts in national and regional technology transfer activities. The laboratory is a preeminent national and international leader in research, development, engineering and production support for defense armament systems. ARDEC partners with a wide variety of organizations, including industry, academia and other nonmilitary government organizations to accelerate the development and transition of new technologies for the warfighter. ARDEC's research investment has also demonstrated commercial spinoff benefits for the nation's civilian economy.

ARDEC has a robust technology transfer program with an ever-increasing number of partnership agreements. Currently it has over 160 active CRADAs, which are only one of many innovative partnering tools being used. In addition, ARDEC uses other tools to advance its technology transfer mission, including educational partnerships, patent licensing, and test service agreements, all in support of the FLC's mission.

From left: Lewis Meixler and Keith Rule of PPPL; and Dr. Theresa Baus, Regional Coordinator

"Advanced Diamond Wire Cutting System," Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory
Excellence in Technology Transfer Award

Researchers at the Princeton Plasma Physics Laboratory (PPPL) won an Excellence in Technology Transfer Award for their efforts to commercialize new techniques they developed for cleaning and cooling the cutting wire of a diamond wire saw.

Conventional methods for cleaning the springs and beads of diamond wire saws use water to clean and cool the wire. This is undesirable where tritium, which is radioactive, or other contaminants may be present. The new PPPL system uses pellets of carbon dioxide, a solid, to clear away particulate matter that may gather in the springs and on the beads of diamond wire. The method also provides for the cooling of the wire. Both the cutting speed and the life of the diamond wire are improved when the new technique is used. Additionally, a new brake and torque mechanism has been developed that minimizes wire failure and increases wire life. A remote control feature allows the wire to be controlled from a distance, which enhances operator safety. Also, a dust containment system reduces the amount of hazardous and toxic material that the cutting process may release into the environment.

It is anticipated that this new system can be used in concrete and metal cutting, including the decommissioning of nuclear reactors and other facilities containing hazardous materials. Two companies have licensed the technology for challenging cutting and machining applications of their own, and others have continued to inquire about it.

Dr. Theresa Baus, Regional Coordinator and Robert Braun of US Army ARDEC

"Coyote Unattended Ground Sensor Network," U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center
Excellence in Technology Transfer Award

A team from the U.S. Army Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center (ARDEC) won an Excellence in Technology Transfer Award for their commercialization of the Coyote Unattended Ground Sensor (UGS) Network. The UGS is a state-of-the-art, joint sensor and communications system that is easy to deploy, resistant to security attacks, reliably scales from small focused targets to a nationwide network and, most importantly, is more cost-effective than less advanced sensing technologies. Though designed for border security and infrastructure monitoring, the increased safety for warfighters using the Coyote UGS is highly significant.

In 2007, Innovative Wireless Technologies (IWT), a Virginia-based company providing wireless sensor products and services for government and commercial customers, approached ARDEC with the idea that UGS technology also could be applied to other federal agencies and commercial needs. With years of cooperative efforts for this program between them, ARDEC and IWT were ideally suited partners. ARDEC's mission to develop engineering processes for munitions, weapons and associated items made it the most appropriate federal lab in which to advance the Coyote™ UGS Network.

The Northeast Region congratulates the winners on a job well done.

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Fall 2008
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