University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Press Release

UWM Research Foundation announces new Catalyst grants

The grants awarded this round total $191,000.

By - Sep 5th, 2017 08:50 am
The 25,000-square-foot Innovation Accelerator building brings researchers together with industry partners and startups to encourage academic research with commercial potential. Photo courtesy of UWM.

The 25,000-square-foot Innovation Accelerator building brings researchers together with industry partners and startups to encourage academic research with commercial potential. Photo courtesy of UWM.

MILWAUKEE _ Five new research projects at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee have received grant seed-funding from the UWM Research Foundation for projects that range from new materials for removal of arsenic from groundwater to a strategy for improving batteries for electric cars.
The Catalyst Grant Program invests in promising early-stage research at UWM in areas where the university has the greatest potential to affect the regional economy through commercializing new technology. Now in its 10th year, the program has awarded more than $4.5 million for 85 projects.
The grants are supported by the Lynde and Harry xBradley Foundation and the Richard and Ethel Herzfeld Foundation. The grants awarded this round total $191,000, and the projects include:

  • Neuropathic pain drug discovery. Alexander “Leggy” Arnold, James Cook and Doug Stafford of UWM’s Milwaukee Institute for Drug Discovery will explore the link between neuro-inflammation and many central nervous system disorders, including neuropathic pain.
  • Ceramic filters for arsenic removal in water. Shangping Xu, associate professor of geosciences, is collaborating with Kohler Co. to develop and test the efficacy of the company’s ceramic filters for removal of arsenic, a carcinogen, from groundwater.
  • Producing low-cost magnesium foam implants. Researcher Benjamin Schultz is developing a material that may offer a low-cost method for producing custom biomedical parts, such as orthopedic implants. The work could significantly improve the success of orthopedic surgery.
  • Improved electric vehicle batteries using silicon hybrid anode. Junjie Niu, assistant professor of materials engineering, is creating a low-cost anode for lithium-ion batteries that improves the batteries’ performance and allows electric cars to travel longer distances before having to recharge.
  • Novel anchoring system for concrete panels. Jian Zhao, associate professor of civil engineering, seeks to improve the safety of epoxy concrete anchoring systems, which require drilling, by redesigning them to minimize concrete failure.

About UWM

Recognized as one of the nation’s 115 top research universities, UW-Milwaukee provides a world-class education to 26,000 students from 89 countries on a budget of $667 million. Its 14 schools and colleges include Wisconsin’s only schools of architecture, freshwater sciences and public health, and it is a leading educator of nurses and teachers. UW-Milwaukee partners with leading companies to conduct joint research, offer student internships and serve as an economic engine for southeastern Wisconsin. The Princeton Review named UW-Milwaukee a 2018 “Best Midwestern” university based on overall academic excellence and student reviews, and the Sierra Club has recognized it as Wisconsin’s leading sustainable university.

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