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News Archive 2001 - 2010

UT System Funding Spurs Research Commercialization

December 15, 2008

Six engineering research projects received $275,000 from the Texas Ignition Fund of The University of Texas System to move their results toward commercialization and the marketplace. The Fund is designed to stimulate commercialization of research discoveries by providing early-stage grants for the development and maturation of those discoveries into marketable intellectual property, in particular to help bridge the gap between discovery and product.

Many of the UT Arlington research projects identified for the TIF grants have been under way for a number of years. One project – Electrical Engineering Professor J.C. Chiao’s battery-less endoluminal sensing telemetry device for gastro-reflux detection – could improve the treatment of millions of people with acid reflux. The grant will support accelerated production of prototypes and FDA approval of the device.

The other UT Arlington TIF-awarded projects and the principal investigators are:
• A universal and cost-effective surface texture process to increase efficiency of solar cells – Electrical Engineering Drs. Meng Tao and Weidong Zhou;
• The liquefaction of Texas lignite to low-cost heavy crude oil – Associate Dean for Research Dr. Richard Billo and Mechanical Engineering’s Dr. Brian Dennis;
• A prosthetic skin – Electrical Engineering Drs. Don Butler and Zeynep Celik-Butler;
• A prototype sensor network with ultra energy efficiency for long-term monitoring applications – Computer Science and Engineering’s Professor Yonghe Liu;
• The development of a nanoporous membrane blood oxygenator – Bioengineering’s Dr. Cheng-Jen “Charles” Chuong.

In all, the UT System awarded nearly $1.2 million to 39 projects at the 15 UT System institutions. UT Arlington received more funding than any other UT System institution. UT Arlington is No. 3 statewide, behind UT Austin and Texas A&M University, when ranked in for-profit investments in research.