RALEIGH, N.C.--()--In a move signaling a new, innovative approach to multidisciplinary research with university partners, North Carolina State University has entered into a multiyear agreement with Eastman Chemical Company to conduct joint cutting-edge research in chemistry, materials science and other scientific disciplines.
“Our work with Eastman Chemical Company provides NC State researchers and students many exciting opportunities to address real-world problems in chemistry and material sciences, and will reduce the time required to take innovative solutions to market.”
As part of the agreement, Eastman will provide $10 million over six years in support of the Eastman Chemical Company Center of Excellence (ECCE) partnership. It also establishes the Eastman Innovation Center (EIC) laboratory. The lab will be located on Centennial Campus, NC State’s nationally recognized research campus.
“This agreement demonstrates NC State's commitment to be a leader in public-private research partnerships,” says NC State Chancellor Randy Woodson. “Our work with Eastman Chemical Company provides NC State researchers and students many exciting opportunities to address real-world problems in chemistry and material sciences, and will reduce the time required to take innovative solutions to market.”
“We’re excited about the possibilities the Eastman Innovation Center being established at NC State brings,” says Dr. Greg Nelson, senior vice president and chief technology officer at Eastman Chemical Company. “Our partnership launches a world-class, open innovation collaboration with a leading university. That relationship will help us bring differentiated new ideas, technologies and materials from early stage research to the market more quickly than traditional approaches.”
The developing research agreement with Eastman should ease the collaborative process, says Dr. Terri Lomax, NC State vice chancellor for research, innovation and economic development.
“In addition to a unique intellectual property agreement, the university has created one central point of contact for Eastman to coordinate activities with both academic and administrative units,” Lomax says. “From the very beginning, we want to demonstrate that collaborating with NC State is unlike working with any other university.”
“Having pre-established cost and intellectual property arrangements makes it easy to start new projects quickly and to encourage easy interactions with North Carolina State University,” says Bob Clemens, Eastman’s vice president of corporate technology.
At least six colleges across the university will participate in the joint research projects, which will be selected by the research steering team comprised of an equal number of company and university researchers. Departments involved in initial research interactions include: chemistry; chemical and biomolecular engineering; textile engineering, materials science, chemistry and science; forest biomaterials; and graphic design and industrial design, as well as NC State’s Center for Innovation Management Studies.
The agreement also allows visiting Eastman scientists to work in NC State labs and allows NC State researchers to do the same at Eastman sites. NC State students are also expected to participate in the research projects.
The Eastman Innovation Center lab will be located in 2,000 square feet of lab space on Centennial Campus. The company is expected to move into the space in early 2013.
About NC State University
Located in the heart of Raleigh, North Carolina State University is the largest four-year school in North Carolina, with more than 34,000 students and 2,000 faculty members. Originally created as an agricultural and technological university, NC State now offers bachelor degrees in 106 disciplines, master’s degrees in 104 fields and doctorate degrees in 61 fields. The university also currently ranks 8th in the U.S. in industry research funding for schools without medical centers, with more than $380 million in total annual research expenditures. For more information, visit http://www.ncsu.edu.
About Centennial Campus
With more than 60 corporate, governmental and non-profit partners and more than 1,200 acres of land, NC State University’s Centennial Campus is one of the largest university-owned research campuses in North America. In addition to housing three of the university’s colleges (Engineering, Textiles, Veterinary Medicine), the campus also houses more than 11,000 staffers, employees and students during the academic year. Built as a live-work-play environment, Centennial is also home to a public middle school, and public walking trails, lake and golf course. In 2013, Centennial will also house the university’s main library, the state-of-the-art James B. Hunt, Jr. Library, which features a robotic book retrieval system. For more information, visit http://centennial.ncsu.edu.
About Eastman Chemical Company
Eastman is a global specialty chemicals company that produces a broad range of advanced materials, additives and functional products, specialty chemicals, and fibers that are found in products people use every day. As a world leader in the diverse markets it serves, Eastman is focused on delivering innovative and technology-based solutions while maintaining its commitment to safety and sustainability. Serving customers in approximately 100 countries, Eastman had 2011 pro forma revenues, giving effect to the Solutia acquisition, of approximately $9.3 billion. The company is based in Kingsport, Tennessee, USA, and, with the completion of the Solutia acquisition, now employs approximately 13,500 people around the world. For more information, visit www.eastman.com.