Edwardsville, Ill. (PRWEB) September 06, 2013
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Interim Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Ann Boyle has signed a three-year cooperative research and development agreement (CRADA) for the School of Engineering to work with the U.S. Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM) at Scott Air Force Base.
The collaboration will facilitate investigation of innovative technologies and techniques in multiple disciplines to provide new opportunities and understand potential solutions to address USTRANSCOM information technology capabilities and supply chain needs, while providing SIUE with diverse and complex research problems facing the management of worldwide logistics.
USTRANSCOM is a unified, functional combatant command of the Department of Defense which provides support to the eight other U.S. combatant commands, the military services, defense agencies and other government organizations. It provides full-spectrum global mobility solutions and related enabling capabilities as required.
SIUE’s expertise in information technology and supply chain management practices was attractive to USTRANSCOM. The relationship will provide opportunities for USTRANSCOM to understand the feasibility, utility, and risk of new concepts and logistics techniques as applied to its missions.
“This will initiate, challenge and advance SIUE research to benefit faculty and students toward reaching their academic goals,” said Hasan Sevim, dean of the School of Engineering. “Faculty and student research will be enhanced by the introduction of new topics and challenges aided by government subject matter expertise and data.”
SIUE faculty and students will have access to selected information on USTRANSCOM and federally operated information and logistics systems. They will learn about USTRANSCOM architectures, business processes, operational and security challenges, and emerging government information technology and logistics techniques.
“This information will expand our understanding of current federal information and logistics practices,” said Cem Karacal, associate dean and professor in the School of Engineering. “It also will promote creation of innovative approaches to future supply chain management capabilities and, ideally, realize reduced costs.”
USTRANSCOM uses the same “Technology Transfer” authorities as federal laboratories to partner with industry and academia, collaboratively exploring future concepts and technologies and sharing expertise for mutual benefit. The outside party obtains access to government expertise and techniques and possibly technology or special facilities, while the government achieves deeper understanding of the potential benefits, risks and feasibility of new concepts and systems.
Both parties thereby advance their ideas and innovations and may use the information gained for their own benefit and future planning purposes. USTRANSCOM cannot pay the non-federal party, but otherwise either partner can contribute resources of their own choosing to make the teamed research possible.
Rob Beutel, USTRANSCOM chief technology officer, promoted the use of the CRADA and is the government’s principal investigator for the effort. “The CRADA is initially investigating some new techniques in information security,” Beutel said. “Improving that is key to so many aspects of logistics.
“However, the agreement is actually a flexible relationship for study of any aspect of logistics from information management to economic considerations and even energy conservation. Both sides benefit from these voluntary partnerships, and we can easily choose to work on new and promising concepts together as we go forward, as our shared expertise and teamwork reveals.”
The SIUE School of Engineering offers one of the most comprehensive and affordable engineering programs in the St. Louis region with eight undergraduate degrees, five master’s degrees and a cooperative doctoral program, all housed in a state-of-the-art facility. Students learn from expert faculty, perform cutting-edge research, and participate in intercollegiate design competitions. Companies in the metropolitan St. Louis area provide students challenging internships and co-op opportunities which often turn into permanent employment. All undergraduate programs are accredited by their respective accreditation agencies.