State Representative Gregory Haddad (D-Mansfield, Chaplin) joined Governor Dannel P. Malloy, University of Connecticut President Susan Herbst and other state officials to announce a $7.5 million grant from General Electric to UConn for a collaborative research and technology initiative.
Haddad, Vice-chair of the legislature’s Commerce Committee, said the project sets the stage for both GE and UConn to work together to help develop and direct activities at the planned Research and Technology Park on campus. The announcement was made at GE Industrial Solutions in Plainville.
“This partnership is exactly what is envisioned for the Technology Park at UConn,” Haddad said. “On top of the important mission of encouraging collaborative efforts between the university and high-tech businesses, there will be the log-term potential for hundreds of new jobs for eastern Connecticut residents.”
UConn’s strong R&D expertise in electrical contact and insulation materials, magnetic and thermal management and arc-physics modeling were cited as particularly attractive for GE’s investment. Specifically, the GE gift will fund research to enhance core circuit breaker technologies. The grant will also finance an endowed professorship at the UConn School of Engineering as well as several graduate fellowships.
The $170 million Technology Park project is expected to create thousands of high-quality jobs and generate tens of millions of dollars in federal and private funding. Haddad added that Mansfield’s long-term water needs may also be met with resources that will allow for the development of safe new water sources.
The landmark project, first discussed in Connecticut more than 20 years ago, calls for construction of a 125,000 square-foot multi-story building comprised primarily of large, flexible-use laboratories containing specialized equipment, not readily available to industry, for collaborative industry-university research. The building will also provide high tech “clean rooms” and a bio-nanofabrication facility, business incubators, private space for use by individual companies, and office space.
The UConn Technology Park will eventually include multiple buildings—many of which could be privately funded—that will house large, flexible-use laboratories containing specialized equipment for collaborative research. The complex, to be located in the North Campus and completed over the next three years, will provide space for business incubators and individual companies.