Happy 10th Anniversary, Michigan Tech Research Institute
When the upstart Michigan Tech Research Institute (MTRI) opened in Ann Arbor 10 years ago, the headlines read: ”There’s a new university in town.” Although that probably rubbed some people at the other Ann Arbor research university the wrong way, it marked the launch of a stellar remote sensing research facility now known around the world.
Today MTRI will celebrate 10 years of growth and success. There will be speakers, tours and demonstrations from 10 a.m. to noon and 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. at MTRI’s Dave House Center in Ann Arbor.
When MTRI opened, it had 24 employees. That number has ballooned to more than 60.
Funded entirely with “soft” or contract money—not a penny of state appropriations goes to pay MTRI’s bills—in 10 years the research institute has done more than $80 million in research.
That research ranges broadly, from use of unmanned aerial vehicles—commonly called drones—to satellite mapping of invasive species in the Great Lakes, radar defense, wildfire remediation and the melting of glaciers in Alaska. Many of its contracts involve national defense work. MTRI scientists and engineers also do research for the US Bureau of Land Management, NASA, the Michigan Department of Transportation and the US Department of Agriculture, to name just a few.
“The addition of MTRI to Michigan Tech has been a win-win,” says David Reed, vice president for research. “Together, we have been able to pursue research opportunities that we could not have done separately. In 10 years, MTRI has attracted a total of $80 million in funding, and much of the research was in collaboration with faculty, staff and students on our main campus in Houghton.”
Read the full story.