federal labs

Roadmap provided for university research and tech commercialization

As a bedrock of American innovation, universities and federal laboratories research and develop new products that help drive economic growth. A new study from the Economic Growth Institute at the University of Michigan aims to improve national competitiveness in this arena by providing a roadmap for universities that includes best practices on translating research from the lab to the marketplace.

R&D expenditures at FFRDCs rise for fourth straight year; Pi Day Chart!

Research and development (R&D) expenditures at federally funded R&D centers (FFRDCs) increased for the fourth consecutive year in FY 2017, eclipsing $20 billion, according to new data from the National Science Foundation. FFRDCs are privately operated R&D organizations that are substantially financed by the federal government. The FFRDCs that performed the most R&D in 2017 were DOE’s Sandia National Lab, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, and DOE’s Los Alamos National Lab. From FY 2016 to FY 2017, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, based in Pasadena, CA, experienced the largest increase in R&D expenditures, rising 25.5 percent to $2.3 billion.  In honor of pie day, the chart below shows the distribution of R&D at FFRDC’s by each administrator type.

 

New DOE partnering service provides simplified access to national labs

The U.S. Department of Energy has launched a new Lab Partnering Service (LPS) that provides an online, single access point platform for investors, innovators and institutions to identify, locate and obtain information on the department’s 17 national laboratories. The new tool is intended to provide industry with a more efficient way to harness technical expertise and intellectual property housed at DOE’s labs.

Express licensing accelerates tech transfer with Air Force labs

In an effort to move technologies into the commercial sector more quickly, Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) has introduced a one-stop shopping experience called Express Licensing. Interested innovators and entrepreneurs can visit a website featuring AFRL-developed technologies that are available for license and learn about pre-negotiated terms and pricing, eliminating the need for lengthy contract negotiations.

Federal labs focusing on partnerships to boost tech transfer

The Federal Laboratory Consortium (FLC) held its national meeting this week, and the emphasis of many conversations around the conference site in San Antonio was how labs can implement new partnerships to yield greater tech transfer successes.

DOE releases guide to the National Labs

The U.S. Department of Energy recently released the State of the Department of Energy National Laboratories Report, which reads like a user manual for the National Labs. For readers with questions about what the labs are, what they are trying to achieve, and how they work with other institutions, the report is an excellent resource. As depicted in the visual accompanying this article, DOE’s labs cover a variety of purposes, enabling the report to provide more generalizable information on the labs than might be possible from another agency. Sections detail DOE’s strategic plan for the labs, scientific objectives, partnership structures and tech transfer initiatives, among others. Each section includes case studies or anecdotes of lab activities and numerous appendices provide additional background.

Establishing External Organizations Key to Unlocking Potential of National Labs, Report Finds

To improve private sector partnerships and increase commercialization efforts, the national labs should consider establishing external nonprofit entities to manage their commercialization efforts, according to a new report from Innovation Associates Inc.

Support for Federally Funded R&D Centers Stagnate After Recovery Act

New National Science Foundation data indicates that the federal government’s support for national laboratories and research centers has continued to decline in constant dollars after peaking with the 2011 infusion of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funding.  Six federally funded research and development centers (FFRDC’s) comprise about one-half of all FFRDC spending: NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab (JPL) and five Department of Energy national labs.

DOE Accepting Applications for Small Business Voucher Pilot Program

The Department of Energy (DOE) announced that it is accepting applications for the first round of its Small Business Vouchers Pilot (SBV) program. Under the SBV program, the DOE will commit up to $20 million in technical and research assistance awards to help small businesses bring next-generation clean energy technologies. Companies may apply for and receive up to $300,000 in assistance from U.S. Department of Energy national laboratories nationwide.

FLC Seeks Success Stories About Research Partnerships

The Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer (FLC) is looking for stories about successful technology partnerships between federal labs and state or local governments. FLC will select examples from all six FLC regions to be featured on its website and at SSTI's 2015 Annual Conference. In 2013, winners were featured in a publication on state and local partnerships. Read submission requirements...

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