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- The news: Xerox is supporting research projects at 11 leading universities in the U.S., Canada and Europe.
- The context: Grants continue a long-standing $1 million-a-year Xerox program that supports fundamental research, promotes industry-academic collaboration.
- The rationale: Xerox labs focus on nearer term innovation while this open innovation program connects the company and researchers with research that offers long-term significance.
Exploring subjects like how materials stick to surfaces, how to create biodegradable plastics from trees, and how to measure the value of document services, 11 fundamental research projects have been selected for funding by Xerox Corporation (NYSE: XRX) at universities around the globe.
The projects are part of the company's long-standing program of grants to researchers at leading universities in the U.S., Canada and Europe and reflect Xerox's open innovation initiatives that include, among others, a partnership between the Xerox Research Centre of Canada, the NRC National Institute for Nanotechnology (NINT) and the Government of Alberta for research and development of materials-based nanotechnology.
The 11 new projects, most of which are funded for three years at $20,000 a year, add to about 30 others currently administered by the company's University Affairs Committee. The UAC grants are included in the Xerox Foundation's nearly $1 million annual contribution to fund research, which is part of its annual $13 million investment in support of educational and nonprofit initiatives.
The 11 new grants for the first half of 2007 are:
* University of Calgary, Canada: "BxNy Analogues of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons for Use as Organic Semiconductors." This project will explore the synthesis and use of boron- and nitrogen-containing polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons as novel organic semiconductors for thin film transistors.
* Clarkson University, Potsdam, N.Y.: "Studies of Adhesion between Polymer Particles and Surfaces." The project will investigate fundamental interactive forces between polymeric particles and various surfaces, which will give Xerox insight into the process of toner marking.
* London School of Economics, United Kingdom: "Global Quantitative Economic Models of Document Lifecycle Services." The project aims to construct and validate the world's first quantitative models of the economics of document services, from creation through production, to search and long-term archiving. It will include models of utilities, pricing, assets and relationships among parts of the value chain.
* Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, La.: "Robust Control System Design." The objective of the project is to develop effective and efficient robust control algorithms for systems such as color print engines with high nonlinearity and uncertainty.
* McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada: "Newtonian and Non-Newtonian Fluid Slot and Dip Coating Studies Based on Empirical and Computational Flow Dynamic (CFD) Methods." The objective is to develop mathematical models to determine coating conditions required for very thin, high-quality, next-generation photoconductive layers.
* University of Ottawa, Canada: "Design and Synthesis of Model Organic Electron Transport Materials." This research looks at establishing design rules for new electron transport materials for use in next-generation electronic applications.
* Princeton University, N.J.: "Ultra-low Density Supported Nanocylinder Arrays Grown with Self-assembled Block Copolymer Templates." The objective is to develop design criteria for the next generation of precisely defined electron emitters, using novel self-assembled block copolymer nanotechnology.
* University of Rochester, N.Y.: "Industrial Associates Membership." This program of the Institute of Optics helps support graduate-level students of the institute, while providing opportunities for Xerox employees to learn about the latest research advances in optics and to participate in the optics summer courses at the U of R.
* Polymer Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences, Bratislava, Slovak Republic: "Molecular Characterization of Complex Industrial Polymers." This research project will investigate advanced chromatographic techniques to facilitate molecular identification and characterization of complex polymer systems.
* SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse, N.Y.: "Biodegradable ‘Green Polymers' from Renewable Resources." The objective of this project is to fabricate and characterize biodegradable plastics from renewable woody biomass such as fast growing willow trees, other hardwoods, switchgrass and corn stalks.
* York University, Toronto, Canada: "Palladium Catalyzed Aminations and the Use of Microwave-assisted Continuous Flow Organic Synthesis." This project will investigate the use of an improved catalyst for carbon-nitrogen bond formation for the synthesis of new materials in conjunction with microwave heating and microreactor systems.
"With a model that supports open, collaborative innovation between private companies like Xerox and leading universities, our program helps expedite core research for the entire community," said Gregory Zack, chair of Xerox's University Affairs Committee. "It supports the academic community while advancing the frontiers of knowledge for everyone; it enables our scientists to expand their knowledge base and develop close ties with academic peers. Our hope is to apply the research to projects we are working on in our own labs."
Since the University Affairs Committee grant program started more than 20 years ago, Xerox has provided over $16 million for more than 300 research projects across a range of technical disciplines. Each year, about 40 projects are funded at 30 colleges and universities. Students and faculty aren't required to deliver a specific result, nor is the work proprietary to Xerox.
Any college or university is eligible for funding but cannot apply for it directly; instead, a Xerox scientist or researcher prepares and presents a proposal to the company's University Affairs Committee, which includes representatives from across Xerox.
About Xerox Corporation
Xerox contributes more than $2 million a year through a variety of educational programs, including University Affairs grants, Xerox's technical minority scholarships, scholarship support to more than 140 colleges and universities, and matching employees' gifts to educational institutions. Xerox people also help champion science in schools by volunteering through the Xerox Science Consultants Program at the elementary level and by mentoring high-school FIRST robotics-competition teams. For more information about research at Xerox, visit
For more information about the Xerox Foundation, visit
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