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Success Stories

CCMR Success Stories
Prototype Development
The CCMR partnered a NY State start-up with two Fiber Science and Apparel Design faculty members. The team developed a wearable ultrasonic pain therapy system, which incorporates a miniature ultrasonic device with a disposable wearable patch. Within a year, this partnership enabled the start-up to construct a prototype patch and to bring the product to market. The company has since been awarded grants, received venture funds and hired 24 employees.
A world-leading semiconductor corporation developed nanoscale fabrication techniques to manufacture nano-gas sensing devices with the help of a Cornell Electrical Engineer.
A Cornell startup developing nanoscale characterization solutions for semiconductor devices, batteries and thin film materials, relied on a Cornell Electrical Engineering faculty to develop a new proprietary scanning probe technology. The company has since obtained funding from federal and state agencies (DARPA, NSF and NYSERDA).
Innovative Product Development
A leading local manufacturer of optics and accessories for IR-UV-VIS (infrared-ultraviolet-visible light) spectroscopy engaged with a Physics professor to develop a prototype shear/compression attachment that allows users of optical microscopes to examine biological tissues in response to applied forces. This new product is being sold to organizations studying the effects of diseases, such as osteoarthritis and could lead to the development of sensitive diagnostic tools. The company is exploring other applications in the medical devices market.
A world-leader in the electronic industry benefited from the expertise of a Chemical Engineering faculty to develop new flexible polymer composites for lighter and flexible consumer electronics.
Exploration of New Markets
A NY manufacturer of carbon-aerogel-based insulation products, used in thermal packaging systems, analyzed the physical properties of its proprietary, high performance materials in consultation with a Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering professor. The team’s work enabled the company to optimize its thermal packaging systems, reducing customers’ costs by decreasing the space needed to transport goods. A few years later, the company explored potential applications in energy storage in partnership with a Chemistry faculty member. The tests conducted at Cornell showed clear promise, enabling the company to receive additional funding and hire new employees. The company remains a regular CCMR facility user and is involved in ongoing collaborations with Cornell.
 A startup designing novel nanostructures coatings worked with a Cornell Chemical Engineer to develop products for the wound care market leading to a new line in its portfolio of technologies.
A 20-year-old research and development firm based in Ithaca specializes in intelligent sensor systems for aircraft and ground vehicle safety. Along with a Fiber Science expert, the team developed a fiber reinforced tape restraint device for aviation maintenance work. The tapes provide an effective, inexpensive solution to the current labor-intensive process of hand bundling cable assemblies.

Biomimicry: In addition the team obtained a state grant to develop a coating to protect power lines during ice storms. The project drew its inspiration from the miniscule ridges of the lotus leaves that prevent water bonding and icing

A global manufacturer of amorphous metal alloys optimized a manufacturing process that improved the electromagnetic properties of its products with the help of a Cornell Chemical Engineering faculty. This project is leading to new applications of its alloys.
Employee Training: The project enabled also to train employees on this innovative technology.
Product Improvement/Overcoming Technical Roadblocks
A hand-decorated cookie company developed a fast drying frosting for use in cookie decorating with a professor of Food Science. The drying time was reduced from 2 days to 4 hours! This allowed the company to ramp up production by 50% without having to relocate to a new facility and to add a national wholesale corporation to its list of clients.
A word leader in filtration systems developed new materials for filtration membranes in collaboration with a Cornell Materials Science expert. This work led to an improved purification process for targeted compounds and the exploration of new markets.
Material Characterization
A materials science startup developing cerium-based nanomaterials worked with an Applied Physics faculty and microscopy expert. The team learned advanced electron microscopy techniques. This enabled the company to better understand the structure and composition of its materials. They fine-tuned the process of producing catalysts used as diesel fuel additives, increasing the efficiency of off-road engines by 6-10%.
A world-wide leader in the development of new materials for a range of applications from semiconductors to solar products worked with a Cornell Materials Science expert to analyze the mechanical and thermal properties of proprietary polymer composites.
A global petrochemical company eager to develop green manufacturing processes for exterior and interior components of the automotive industry studied the crystallization behavior of sustainable polymers with the help of a Cornell Chemist.
New technologies
 A global semiconductor company worked with a Cornell interdisciplinary team, gathering faculty members from Physics, Electrical Engineering, and Applied Physics, to develop new mechanisms of current-controlled spin dynamics for use in nonvolatile magnetic random access memories.
New Material Development
A Rochester startup was developing a new manufacturing technology for solar panels on flexible substrates for use in a high volume, roll-to-roll manufacturing process. In collaboration with a Materials Science and Engineering faculty the company conducted R&D on thin film deposition processes on novel substrates. This partnership enabled the startup to receive multiple federal grants and several multi-million dollars of venture financing. The company has since been acquired by a larger corporation and relocated to California.
An energy-focused startup located in California collaborated with a Cornell Chemical Engineering expert to develop a scalable gas-assisted electrospinning manufacturing process for nanocomposite energy storage materials.
Quality Assurance/Quality Control
 A NY State manufacturer of polishing pads for the semiconductor industry approached Cornell for assistance with a product improvement project. In partnership with a professor from Chemical Engineering, they identified the parameters affecting the performance of polishing pads. The team developed new production procedures and in-house quality control measures, which resulted in the company manufacturing a higher quality product at lower cost.
A Rochester manufacturer of ultrathin membranes used in molecular and nanoparticle separations wanted to validate new applications for their novel products. A microscopy expert from the Applied Physics Department helped them demonstrate the utility of their ultrathin membranes as high-performance sample supports for Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM). The development of a prototype progressed quickly towards full production and marketing. In addition to applying successfully for federal grants, the company has now distributors in the US, Europe and Asia.
A small New York State manufacturer of tabletop plasma surface treatment equipment used Cornell facilities and worked with Materials Science faculty experts to analyze the performance of a new line of plasma cleaners.  The undergraduate students working on the project constructed the equipment and the software necessary for the analyses.
Internship Opportunities for Students: The undergraduate students working on the project continued their work with the company as summer interns.
Use of Industrial Waste/Green Products/Sustainability
An 80-year-old manufacturer of concrete products for the construction and homeowner markets explored the use of post-industry materials such as fly ash in their products with the help of a Civil Engineering faculty. The project enabled the company to reduce costs and to market a partially recycled final product.
One of the largest tire manufacturers in the world engaged a Chemistry professor to develop new bio-based and sustainable polymers. The company’s goal was to decrease its manufacturing costs, rely less on fossil fuels and improve the durability and the safety of its products.
Evaluation of Technical Investments
Prior to making a substantial capital investment in a new ultra-high resolution microscope, a leading innovator of specialty glasses relied heavily on the CCMR Facilities and technical staff to demonstrate the value of such a large investment. After successful demonstration of the microscope’s capabilities, the company acquired its own high resolution instrument.
Workforce Development: Cornell facilities managers continue to help train the company’s technicians on new techniques and to develop new procedures.
Employee recruitment
A world-class producer of petroleum additives turned to the CCMR to recruit new employees. Job descriptions were distributed to targeted groups, information sessions were organized for faculty and students, and on campus interviews were arranged with the company’s selected candidates.

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