OCAST board approves $2 million in applied research funds for 10 projects
December 4, 2008
Ten of 33 applications have been approved for more than $2 million in OCAST funding from the Oklahoma Applied Research Support (OARS) program. The research will be conducted for the next three years. Eight other projects were favorably qualified by the peer review process but were victims of budget limits.
The governing board for the Oklahoma Center for the Advancement of Science and Technology (OCAST) approved the 10 successful applicants after considering recommendations from the peer review team made up of scientists and experts chosen from around the nation.
Peer review is the internationally accepted method for evaluating research and development projects vying for public funds. The peer review team considers the likelihood for commercialization and quality science as criteria.
Michael Carolina, executive director of OCAST, described approval of the 10 projects as “another important step in Oklahoma’s patient long-term investment in technology-based economic development.
“We want to help Oklahoma researchers to develop wealth and job-producing technologies for our state’s future,” Carolina said.
Projects range from advanced materials to biotechnology and include optics and photonics, pharmaceuticals, manufacturing equipment and tests and measurement.
OCAST applied research funds target accelerated technology that has significant potential for producing a commercially successful product, process or service with high potential to benefit the state’s economy.
The applied research award winners include the following:
- Stillwater, Durant – Scrap foam left over from the ETS-Lindgren manufacturing plant in Durant will be used to make composite panels for ultra-light load-bearing structures that can simultaneously provide acoustic and radio frequency shielding. Cost savings is projected to be $3 million per year with much larger sales potential. Other funds are from the National Science Foundation and the Technology and Business Assessment Group. Raman Singh of Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, is principal investigator. Award: $118,178 for two years
- Calera, Stillwater – This project seeks to develop and commercialize structural laminates made from recycled carpets. Discarded carpet materials from KT Plastics in Calera will be used to formulate a unique combination of impact, mechanical and acoustic insulation properties that could be beneficial to the infrastructure and transportation industries. Ranji Vaidyanathan of Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, is principal investigator. Award: $89,950 for two years
- Stillwater – Robert Wetteman of Oklahoma State University is researching development of an efficient method to determine various stages of reproduction cycles in cattle. An internal rumen bolus that signals a solar-powered receiver is central to the process. Both beef and dairy interests should benefit from projects that will result in genetically superior livestock. Award: $116,333 for three years
- Ardmore – IMTEC, a 3M Company in Ardmore, will participate in a project to analyze the characteristics of an oxide layer formed by anodic oxidation. The layer could be compatible as an anodized implant for bone cells. Mauricio Sanchez is principal investigator of the project that proposes to modify the current Indure Dental Implant system by reducing healing time and lowering manufacturing costs. Award: $90,000 for two years
- Oklahoma City – Successful development of a safe and effective oral contraceptive for men is part of a project with Kevin Moore of Siwa Biotech Corporation serving as principal investigator. The research team will identify novel small molecule TPST-2 inhibitors with therapeutic potential as a reversible male contraceptive to first be tested on mice. Award: $300,000 for two years
- Oklahoma City – Paul DeAngelis will work with the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center to develop a new platform technology to add a heparosan polymer to therapeutics as a viable alternative to polyethylene glycol polymers. Such polymers are used to decrease dosage requirements and reduce the side effects of many drugs. Match funding will be from Heparinex LLC and Emergent Technologies Oklahoma LP, both of Oklahoma City. Award: $299,645 for two years
Optics and Photonics
- Tulsa – Hakki Refai with 3D Icon Corporation of Tulsa, will research and develop the optical and electronic subsystems required to obtain optimal performance in a static three-dimensional volumetric display. The result will enhance computer and data visualization to improve human-computer interfaces. The outcome will be a working 3D projector prototype suitable for development into a final product. Award: $299,932 for two years.
- Oklahoma City – This project seeks development of a more efficacious treatment for hepatitis C. Preliminary research indicates the addition of fluvastatin to the standard therapy of interferon and ribavirin can increase the cure rate to more than 60 percent. Work will be done by Ted Bader with the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Oklahoma City. Award: $257,922 for two years
- Stillwater – Armstrong World Industries of Stillwater will provide matching funds for a project that involves the systematic investigation of the transport behavior of composite webs through processing machinery. Prabhakar Pagilla of Oklahoma State University will direct the project to focus on formation and winding and unwinding of composite webs in key in-line conditions such as convection ovens, accumulators and printing and registration units. Award: $150,000 for three years
Test and Measurement
- Tulsa, Stillwater – Jay Hanan of Oklahoma State University will focus his research to improve corrosion measurement for military aircraft that have been used beyond their expected serviceable years. A private company, Veracity Technology Solutions of Tulsa, funded building of a Continuous Autonomous Tester to be used in this process. Award: $300,000 for three years