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VIDEO: UC’s Real-World Research Displayed at Statehouse Showcase


UC research helps drive Ohio’s economy. And UC researchers demonstrated that to legislators, aides, public officials and others at the March 15 Statehouse Showcase.

Date: 3/17/2011 12:00:00 AM
By: M.B. Reilly
Phone: (513) 556-1824
Photos By: Dottie Stover

UC ingot  





Both the proven and potential economic impact of the University of Cincinnati’s world-class research was demonstrated at the Columbus Statehouse on March 15.

Using interactive, hands-on displays, UC researchers displayed their work and its impact to Ohio senators and representatives, aides, Statehouse staff, industry partners, news media, high school students and others. It’s research that has already led to start-up companies and jobs in Ohio, has already brought innovation and significant savings to Ohio companies and has the potential to continue those traditions.

According to Sandra Degen, vice president for research, the event and the projects on display are real-world examples of UC’s research leadership and why the university ranks among the nation’s elite of public research-intensive universities, No. 25, based on National Science Foundation data on federal research expenditures. The latest figures on UC research funding from both private and public sources is at an all-time high of $443 million.

The projects on display during the 2011 Statehouse Showcase were
Wim van Ooij
UC's Wim van Ooij, left, developed a new way to bond steel to rubber. Based on that research, Cooper Tire will manufacture a new kind of tire right here in Ohio.



PERFORMANCE-ENHANCED TIRES TO BE MADE RIGHT HERE IN OHIO
UC researcher Wim van Ooij, professor emeritus of engineering and founder of ECOSIL Technologies, LLC, in Fairfield, Ohio, came up with a new way to bond steel to rubber through the use of a thin film of liquid silanes (a silicon-based chemical compound). That patented process has resulted in a new tire-cord coating technology that promotes corrosion resistance. Tires with the new technology will be manufactured right here in Ohio by Cooper Tire & Rubber Co., Findlay, Ohio. Joining van Ooij at the UC event was Clay S. Lewis, director, materials applications development for Cooper, and  Shawn Donaldson, senior chemist at the company.


PARTNERSHIP AIMS TO CREATE BETTER WEIGHT-LOSS SOLUTIONS
UC’s nationally recognized obesity researchers, represented at Statehouse Showcase by Kirk Habegger, post doctoral fellow in the College of Medicine, have partnered with an Ohio medical-device firm to create better weight-loss solutions. UC and Ethicon Endo-Surgery are working together to better understand the biological processes contributing to the success of surgical weight-loss procedures and develop less-invasive treatment options for obese patients.


UC NANOTUBE RESEARCH: A SUPER-SMALL, LIGHT-WEIGHT MATERIAL WITH OUTSIZED RESULTS
UC carbon nanotube research, led by Vesco Shanov, associate professor of engineering, has already led to the founding of a start-up firm, General Nano, LLC. Both Shanov and Joe Sprengard, president of General Nano, participated in the Statehouse Showcase, along with David Mast, associate professor of physics.

Carbon nanotube thread looks not unlike your average black, cotton thread. But carbon nanotube thread is transforming military and aerospace equipment, biomedical devices and communications. Because carbon nanotubes are so light, small and electrically conductive, they can be used for purposes like

  • Replacing the copper wiring in an F-16 – with the result of removing about 3,500 pounds of weight from the plane.
  • Serving as an antenna when sewn into clothing (like military uniforms).
  • Creating lightweight, bullet-proof, super-strong fiber when incorporated into windshields and vehicle windows.

In Columbus, visitors were able to try on a UC jacket with carbon nanotube thread sewn in, such that the jacket is an antenna providing cell-phone transmission/reception.
Military Medicine at UC
Visitors at UC's Statehous Showcase gave CPR to a medical dummy used by UC's Institute for Military Medicine. The institute studies combat casualty care.




UC, AIR FORCE PARTNER FOR INNOVATIONS IN MILITARY MEDICINE

UC’s Institute for Military Medicine, which includes Richard Branson and Alex Lentsch, both professors in the College of Medicine, is expanding its research on combat casualty care through a new agreement with the United States Air Force and the Office of Naval Research. A multimillion-dollar partnership is funding projects ranging from the effects of aeromedical evacuation on the body’s inflammatory response to clinical studies on oxygen requirements after traumatic injury and the safe delivery of oxygen in combat environments.


NOVEL MICROFLUIDICS RESEARCH LEADS TO NEW MANUFACUTRING FACILITY AND NEW JOBS

The technology transfer of UC research, led by Chong Ahn, professor of engineering, has resulted in a Forest Park, Ohio, manufacturing plant, which produces low-cost, high-sensitivity diagnostic tests for early disease diagnosis. The diagnostic test is designed for bedside/point-of-care use in order to provide physicians immediate answers on patient status.

The plant and its parent company, Siloam Biosciences, first took shape in the BIOSTART incubator. At its BIOSTART “graduation” in 2008, the company already had seven employees. Siloam has since added eight more high-tech jobs and anticipates hiring four 4 to five more this year, according to Aniruddha Puntambekar, vice president, strategic business and operations for Siloam.
 

LESS INVASIVE TESTING IS GOAL OF NEW UC-DEVELOPED TECHNOLOGY

UC scientists Amit Bhattacharya, professor of environmental health, and Nelson Watts, MD, professor of medicine and director of the UC Bone Health and Osteoporosis Center, have developed a new painless and non-invasive diagnostic technology called “Bone Shock Absorbance” (BSA). BSA measures bone quality and appears to more accurately identify patients at high risk of suffering an osteoporosis-related bone fractures than current alternative methods that simply measure bone mineral density. This technology may enable better delivery of existing osteoporosis therapies, reducing pain and disability and the billions of dollars in direct health care costs caused by osteoporosis. BSA is being commercialized by OsteoDynamics, Inc., a new company which has received seed funding from Southern Ohio Creates Companies, a venture capital fund. Also involved in this research are Integrated BioScience Solutions, LLC, Loveland, Ohio, and BIOSTART life sciences business incubator, Cincinnati, Ohio. The research effort and its commercialization was represented at Statehouse Showcase by Ron Schultheis of OsteoDynamics.


UC AND GE PARTNER ON JET-NOISE REDUCTION AND ENGINE STABILITY
UC engineers led by Ohio Eminent Scholar Effie Gutmark, distinguished professor of engineering, are working long term with General Electric-Aviation to continually reduce aircraft-engine noise. It’s research that has already had an effect and promises to continue to do so – not only for military aircraft but civilian aircraft too. UC and GE are also partnering on increasing jet afterburner stability – which will improve engine performance and longevity. Also involved in this research effort are Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Dayton, Ohio, and Innovative Scientific Solutions, Inc., Dayton, Ohio.

 
BETTER BREATHING FOR SLEEP APNEA SUFFERERS (AND HOSPITAL PATIENTS)

Current consumer and medical devices aid breathing by “indiscriminately” pushing air into the lungs. That means less effective treatment and greater discomfort for those with sleep apnea as well as hospital patients. UC researchers, led by Ohio Eminent Scholar Effie Gutmark, distinguished professor of engineering, have a patent-pending design for a new acoustic ventilator that will “hear” where breathing air is most needed, whether in a collapsed lung or a less-efficient lung. This research, supported by BIOSTART life sciences business incubator, Cincinnati, Ohio, is expected to lead to a new start-up company right here in Ohio in the near future.


STATEHOUSE STAFF TRY OUT UC’S FLYING QUADRACOPTERS

UC’s flying quadracopters are used by the university to encourage Ohio youth to consider careers and study in science and math. These two quadracopters were purchased thanks to funding from the Ohio Board of Regents. Demonstrating the quadracopters in Columbus were James Basham, assistant professor of teacher education, Daniel Bullard, graduate assistant, Maya Israel, assistant professor of teacher education,  Helen Meyer, associate professor of teacher education, and Nelson Vincent, associate dean in UC’s College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services (CECH).
UC quadracopter
From left, James Basham and Daniel Bullard of CECH operate the UC quadracopter with Ohio Representative Bob Mecklenborg and UC's Greg Vehr.















STUDENT-DEVELOPED LAB ON-A-CHIP PUSHES BOUNDARIES FOR BLOOD TESTS

A UC student-developed lab-on-a-chip, devised by Andrew Browne, a student in UC’s Physician Scientist Training Program, advances the boundaries of rapid analysis for blood tests. An Ohio start-up company, Siloam Biosciences, is considering the student’s breakthrough as a potential product offering.