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Award winning innovation

Inventive researcher helps UDRI win a Dayton Business Journal Innovation Index Award

Bob Kauffman’s successful efforts to commercialize several of the technologies he invented during his 35 years at the University of Dayton Research Institute earned UDRI one of the Dayton Business Journal’s first Innovation Index Awards.

The awards competition was formed in partnership with the Dayton Development Coalition to recognize those individuals, teams and companies whose innovative approaches and solutions to business challenges help fuel the region’s economic development. Judges selected winners from 60 nominations in four categories. UDRI was recognized in the commercialization category; the others were service to society, workforce development and global fluency.

During the last year alone, Kauffman, a distinguished research chemist and group leader for fluid and lubricant technologies in UDRI’s nonstructural materials division, was granted patents on three different award-winning technologies previously licensed by UDRI to three separate Dayton area companies. Each technology has been recognized by the editors of R&D Magazine and other judges as an “R&D 100” award winner, a designation reserved for the 100 most technologically significant new product introduced into the global marketplace:

These technologies include:

The Status and Motion Activated Radiofrequency Tag (SMART) sensor system, licensed to American Thermal Instruments of Moraine in June 2011. The SMART sensor is a modified RFID tag that becomes readable only after a monitored problem has occurred. In contrast to other sensor systems, which combine commercial sensors with RFID tags to produce wireless sensors, the concept of using the RFID as the sensor was developed to minimize the size, cost and power requirements of the SMART technology. U.S. Patent 8,395,521 “Smart Aerospace Structures,” filed January 2010, granted March 2013;

Power Activated Technology for Conductor Healing (PATCH), licensed to D’Angelo Technologies (Formerly Pinnacle) of Beavercreek in September 2009. PATCH is a process that enables powered conductors of electrical wires to self-heal when they become exposed to the environment due to cracked/damaged insulation. The PATCH process has been developed as both an aqueous repair solution and an electrical wire with a multi-layered self-healing polymeric insulation. U.S. Patent 8,624,118 “Water-Soluble Polymer Coating for Use on Electrical Wiring,” filed September 2008 (Includes radiofrequency detection of frayed wiring), granted January 2014; and

Remaining Useful Life Evaluation Routine (RULER), licensed to Fluitec in December 1993. The hand-held RULER instrument used to predict the remaining useful lives of lubricating oils, fuels, cooking oils and food stuffs by measuring the level of antioxidants remaining in the analyzed material, is  sold world-wide by Fluitec; the joint venture originally included UDRI and Gem City Engineering of Dayton. Although the RULER is being used in a wide range of applications, the primary focus the past few years has been the analysis of lubricants used in wind, gas and wind turbines used to create energy. U.S. Patent 8,512,547 “Voltammetric technique to determine the individual concentration of different antioxidants of the same class,” filed April 2012, granted August 2013.

These and other technologies that Mr. Kauffman has developed at the University of Dayton Research Institute have garnered more than $1 million in licensing fees for the University of Dayton.

Each year, sponsored research programs at the University of Dayton provide real-world research opportunities to nearly 300 undergraduate and graduate students working with more than 500 professional and faculty researchers from the Research Institute, the School of Engineering and the College of Arts and Sciences.

May 23, 2014


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