Wednesday July 30, 2014

Global Innovation

Emerson Climate Technologies' global innovation center will be a real-world classroom, a research partner and an economic development spark for Dayton.

Emerson Climate Technologies, a business of Emerson, has announced its intent to move forward with plans to build and support an innovation center at the University of Dayton to advance research and education for the global heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVACR) industry.

Company officials estimate the project cost at between $35 million and $40 million, of which approximately $20 million is capital to build the facility.

The center will be located at the corner of Main and Stewart streets on nearly five acres of University-owned land. The University's master plan devotes space on this part of campus for attracting high-tech companies that can spur research, serve as real-world classrooms for students and spark economic development for the Dayton region. In 2013, GE Aviation opened a $53 million research center nearby.

Emerson’s proposed 40,000-square-foot facility, which includes classrooms, will employ 30 to 50 people when fully operational. It's expected to be completed in late 2015 with a formal grand opening in spring 2016.

The center, the result of a partnership between Emerson Climate Technologies and the University of Dayton, will be a one-of-a-kind research and training hub where Emerson experts, HVACR industry leaders and University faculty and students can come together to focus on the technology and best practices that will drive the future of the HVACR industry. The center will foster an ambitious, collaborative approach to  innovation, research and training — all to create new technologies that address HVACR industry challenges, such as increasing energy efficiency, promoting sustainability and improving system connectivity.

The center’s activities will focus on five HVACR industry end-markets — residential air conditioning, commercial air conditioning, food retail, food service and network/data centers. The facility will feature prototype installations of real-world applications, such as the heating and cooling system for a house and a refrigeration system for a supermarket, to give University researchers, Emerson product developers, industry partners, customers and students an opportunity to experiment with concepts, technologies and scenarios before trying them in actual customer installations.

“This facility fills a real and critical need for the HVACR industry today,” said Ed Purvis, executive vice president of Emerson Climate Technologies. “Nowhere else will you find a similar facility where academic researchers and industry participants can come together under one roof to dialogue and develop and test technology solutions through various real-world applications. The goal is to create the world’s premier HVACR research-and-development facility where creativity and open-mindedness are encouraged. Here, new game-changing technologies and services will be conceived and tested to create beneficial change in our industry and world.”

The center, located just 40 miles from Emerson Climate Technologies' global headquarters in Sidney, Ohio, will facilitate collaboration between Emerson and the University of Dayton’s School of Engineering, Research Institute and other academic departments on campus. Students in marketing, communication, business, health fields and the sciences may eventually become involved in the collaboration.

“By choosing the University of Dayton campus for its new innovation center, Emerson Climate Technologies has invested not only in its own future, but in ours,” said Daniel J. Curran, president. “The partnership will help make the University a center for research and development in a highly important global industry.  And the center will serve as a potential employer for many of our graduates. We believe this partnership will pay dividends for years to come.” 

Construction of the new facility is tentatively scheduled to begin in October and is expected to be completed by the end of 2015. Once completed, the Emerson Climate Technologies Innovation Center will be the innovation hub for a global network of product engineering, development and testing facilities that Emerson Climate Technologies operates in the U.S., Canada, China, Germany and the United Kingdom.

Contact Tim Flinn, vice president for marketing and eBusiness for Emerson Climate Technologies, at 937-498-3325.

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