Stony Brook University has recently received $20 million in Center for Advanced Technology, or CAT, awards from NYSTAR that will foster new innovations in energy efficiency and biotechnology.
NYSTAR, Empire State Development’s Division of Science, Technology, and Innovation, will provide the university with two awards of $10 million each over the course of 10 years.
One award will fund the creation of a Center for Advanced Technology in Integrated Electric Energy Systems, or CIEES, and the other will provide continued maintenance of the Center for Biotechnology.
Stony Brook won the awards from a competition with 10 other centers. The Advanced Energy Center submitted a new proposal for the CIEES, and the Center for Biotechnology re-competed and won as well.
“It was quite an accomplishment,” Yacov Shamash, Stony Brook University’s vice president for economic development, said.
“The new CIEES will be used to solve practical problems in the energy industry outside of Stony Brook by inventing relevant energy solutions or technologies, but mostly to support SBU as an engine of innovation and economic opportunity,” said Benjamin Hsiao, the CIEES director and chair of the chemistry department.
“The center would assist its faculty and students to go out and explore, from collaborations to entrepreneur activities to help them spin off new companies,” he said, “as well as foster new business opportunities to generate jobs for local people.”
The CIEES will be involved in research collaborations with the Brookhaven National Laboratory and Stony Brook’s Energy Frontier Research Center. Hsiao said that these partnerships will “really amass tremendous expertise and research innovation.” The center will be located in the existing Advanced Energy Center building in SBU’s Research and Development Park.
As one of New York’s seven original CATs, the 30-year-old Center for Biotechnology will use its $10 million award to continue its efforts and innovations.
Clinton Rubin, the director of the Center for Biotechnology, said in an email that the funding will “help faculty think of their basic science as potential technology-in-the-making, and help industry consider work at SBU as worthy of investment for growth.”
Since its establishment, the center has been involved in over 396 early stage research projects with more than a dozen technologies becoming commercially available products, according to the Center for Biotechnology website.
With the addition of the CAT in Integrated Electric Energy Systems, Stony Brook will now own three out of the 15 CATs located in New York state.
“This is really a gateway to connect outside industries to the university faculty and students,” Hsiao said.
NYSTAR has funded all three Centers for Advanced Technology at SBU. Rubin said that their funding for the Center for Biotechnology “represents the foundation support for our technology development and education programs.”